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3 3433 08237403 8 







Bishop of the Protestant Episcopal Church iu the State of New- York, and Rector of 
Trinit}' CImrch, in the City of New- York, 

Gn Friday, the first Day of March, 1816, in Trinity Church, 
in the Citv of New- York : 




Jkhop cf the Protestant Episco;>al Church in lUe State of >Tew-YorV. 



No. 99 Pearl-street. 


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W ,:. 

• •• • A. * 

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Oi C. OS c 

Jt EOPLE of the congregation ! the remains of your 
Pastor lie before you — the beloved Pastor who so long 
fed you with the bread of life, and whose accents of 
persuasion you have so often heard in this sacred 

My brethren of the Episcopal clergy! we have 
long mourned the living death of our spiritual Father 
— ^his sufferings are terminated — he is at rest. 

When wc contemplate that venerated corpse, it is 
natural to inquire, 

What has become of the spirit which so recentiy 
inhabited it ? 

What will become of that tabernacle of clay which 
this spirit has deserted ? 

4 The State of the Departed^ 

Christian believers, these are inquiries deeply in- 
teresting to you. Soon each one ot 3'ou will be, as 
he whose remains you now behold. 

What becomes of the spirit of the believer when it 
leaves its tabernacle of clay ? 

Does it sink into annihilation? We must subdue 
all those feelings which constitute the perfection and 
happiness of our nature, before we can contemplate 
the extinction of being but with horror. There is not 
a power of his soul which man does not shudder at 
die thought of losing— not a virtuous enjoyment which 
he does not wish to carry with him beyond the grave 
— not an acquisition that ennobles or adorns him which 
he would not impress with the seal of eternity. The 
voice of the Creator speaks in the soul of the being 
whom he has made, and inspires the hope that he is 
immortal. But, alas 1 tl^at voice is only faint and 
feeble. Immortality, an unmerited gift to a fallen 
creature, must be assured by the express promise of 
him who alone ean bestow it. The word of the 
Author of our being must be tlie pledge, that this 
being shall not be extinguished. 

Blessed be God — this word we have— God hath 
spoken — "The spirit shall return to him who gave 

This, believer, is thy confidence and thy rejoicing. 
Thy spirit returns to God — to God all glorious and 
all good ; who so loved thee as to give for thee his 
only begotten Son ; and who in the blood of his Son 

in a Funeral Address* 6 

hath sealed the assurance that tliou shalt be ever with 
him. Canst thou doubt whether in his presence thou 
shalt be happy ? Ah ! the happiness reserved for 
thee by thy God, thine eye hath not seen, thine ear 
hath not heard, and thy heart cannot conceive. But, 

ffhen does the spirit enter on this state of complete 

There cannot be a moment's doubt, that departed 
saints do not enter on the Jlill fruition of bliss im- 
mediately on their release from the body. In what 
does this fulness of bliss consist? In the union of the 
purified spirit with the glorified body. But until the 
voice of the Son of God calls to the corruptible to put 
on incorruption, and the mortal immortality, that body 
is confined to the tomb, embraced by corruption, 
mingled with the dust. Admission to heaven, the 
place of the vast universe of God, where the vision of 
his glory, more immediately displayed, shall constitute 
the eternal felicity of the redeemed, does not take 
place, according to the sacred writings, until the judg- 
ment at the great day ; when the body, raised incor- 
ruptible and glorious, shall be united to the soul, 
purified and happy. While the soul is separate from 
the body, and absent from that heaven which is to be 
her eternal abode, she cannot have attained the perfec- 
tion of her bliss. 

Will the privileges of believers be greater than those 
of their divine Head? His glory in heaven consists 
in the exaltation of his human nature — of his glorified 

6 The State of the Departed j 

body in union with his perfect spirit. But in the 
interval between his death and his resurrection, his 
body was embahned by his disciples, washed with 
their tears, and guarded in the sepulchre by his enemies. 
His spirit therefore was not in heaven until he ascended 
there after his resurrection. " Touch me not," said 
he to Mary Migdalene, when he had risen from the 
dead, "for I have not yet ascended to your Father 
" and my Father, to your God and my God."* Our 
blessed Lord, in his human nature, was not in heaven 
until after his resurrection. And will a privilege be 
conferred on the members which was not enjoyed by 
the Head? "This day thou shalt be with me in 
" Paradise," was his language to the penitent thief 
associated with him at his crucifixion-^in Paradise, not 
in heaven ; for the happiness of heaven supposes the 
happiness of the whole man, of his soul united to his 
body. But on that day in which the Saviour assured 
the penitent subject of his mercy that he should be 
with him in Paradise, the body of the one was con- 
signed to corruption, and the body of the other to the 

What then is the state of the soul in the period 
between death and the resurrection — between her sepa- 
ration from the body and her re-union with it — be- 
tween her release from this her state of exile, and her 
admission to final and complete felicity in her eternal 

* John XX. 17. 

in a Funeral Address, 7 

Is she in a state of unconsciousness? All pro- 
bability is against the supposition. Consciousness 
seems a necessary attribute of spirit in a disembodied 
state. The temporary suspension of consciousness in 
the present life arises from that union of the soul with 
the body, which in many cases controls, and changes, 
and suspends her operations. 

But a state of unconsciousness is a state of oblivion 
— and this must be an object of aversion to the happy 
spirit. In the present life indeed there is often an 
oblivion of care that corrodes, of adversity that wounds 
the spirit — or that which, from the connexion of the 
body with the soul, is necessary to the renewed exer- 
tion of its powers, and to renewed enjoyment. But 
when the soul, with her mortal tabernacle, has shaken 
off her sins and sorrows, this oblivion cannot be neces- 
sary; it must interrupt her enjoyment — it caimot there- 
fore be assigned her in a state which, her probation 
being finished, is a state of reward and of bliss. 

But, on this as on every other point connected with 
our spiritual interests, we are not left to speculation, 
and to a balance of probabilities. What was the lan- 
guage of our blessed Lord to his penitent companion 
on the cross? — " This day thou shalt be with me in 
" Paradise." But would this have been the language 
of consolation, of hope, of triumph, if Paradise be a 
state of oblivion ? Or can we for a moment indulge 
the idea, that the human soul of the blessed Jesus, sunk 
at death into a state of forgetfulness, which reduced it 
to a level with the body that was sleeping in the sepul- 
chre ? No ; his soul was actively engaged — engaged 

8 The State of the Departed^ 

in prosecuting that gracious scheme of redemption 
which occupied his life, which engrossed his last mo- 
ments of agony, and which he relinquished not even 
with death. He " went," says the apostle,* " and 
" preached to the spirits in prison," to the spirits in safe 
keeping, '• to the sometime disobedient," but finally 
penitent antediluvians, " in the days of Noah," who, 
though they were swept off in the deluge of waters, 
found, through the merits of the Lamb slain from the 
beginning of the world, a refuge from the flames of 
Tophet, from the surges of tlie burning lake. While 
his body was reposing in the grave, he went in his 
spirit and " preached," or (as the word signifies) pro- 
claimed, the glad tidings, to the souls of the departed 
saints, of that victory over death which the Messiah, in 
whom they trusted, was to achieve ; and of that final 
redemption of the body and resurrection to glory, the 
hope of which constituted their enjoyment in the place 
of the departed. t 

* 1 Peter iii. 19, 20. 

t The above is the interpretation of this very obscure passage, 
which is advanced and maintained with great ingenuity, force, 
and erudition, by Bishop Horsley, in his Sermon on " Christ's 
" descent into Hell." This interpretation gives no sanction, as 
Bishop Horsley justly observes, to the doctrine of purgatory. 
Purgatory is considered as a place of punishment and purification 
for those who die under the guilt of sins of infirmity, from which 
they are delivered either when they have been sufficiently purified 
by suffering purgatorial pains, or by the efficacy of the masses 
which are said for them. There is no foundation for this doctrine 
in Scripture. At death the souls of the righteous and of the 
wicked go to a state, the one of happiness, and the other of misery, 
in the place of the departed j and there is no change in their state 

in a Funeral Address. 9 

Could God, who is " the God of the living" onl)% 
be styled emphaticciliy " the God of Abraham, of Isaac, 
" and oi Jacob," if their departed spirits did not live 
to him in a state of consciousness and enjoyment?* 
Did the holy apostle, who in labours and in sufferings 
died daily, and who daily was renewed by the hope of 
the glory prepared for him, look forward to a state of 
unconsciousness after death, when he desired to " de- 

except what arises from the complete consummation, in body as 
well as soul, of the happiness of the one in Heaven, and the 
misery of the otiier in (ysEw^,) Hell. 

Christ proclaimed, to the spirits in prison, in a state of seclusion 
and separation, or, as the word maybe translated, in safe keepings 
the glad tidings of his victory over death, of their final resurrection 
to glory. Were they previously in doubt as to these events — a 
doubt which must have been incompatible with their happiness? 
By no means. They died in the faith that the Messiah was to 
achieve this victory; and in this faith their spirits rejoiced. But 
Christ, when he descended to them, changed their faith in this 
event as future, into faith in it as actually accomplished — and he 
thus coufinned the gluiious hopes which they already enjoyed. 

But why are the antediluvians, those who were ^'^ sometime dis- 
" obedient," but afterwards became penitent " in the days of 
" Noah," selected as the peculiar objects of the Saviour's preach 
ing? "To this I can only answer," (says Bishop Horsley,) 
" that I think I have observed in some parts of Scripture an 
" anxiety, if the expression may be allowed, to convey distinct 
" intimations, that the antediluvian soul i^ not uninterested in the 
" redemption and the final retribution." 

But for full answer on this point, and on many other inquiries 
connected with this subject, the reader is referred to Bishop 
Horsley's Sermon on Christ's descent into Hell, published at the 
end of his new translation of Hosea, and in the volumes of his 

* Matt. xxii. 32. 


10 The State of the Departed^ 

" part and to be with Christ," to be " absent from the 
" body and present with the Lord ?" 

No — believer, when thy soul departs from the body, 
she does not pass into that state of utter forgetfulness, 
which, even in the present scene of sin and woe, thou 
dost dread as the greatest evil with which thou canst 
be visited. Thou wilt go to a place of enjoyment — 
characterized as the bosotn of Abraham; because there 
thou wilt be blessed with the company of this Father 
of the Faithful, of patriarchs and prophets, who are 
all waiting their consummation, the redemption of the 
body. Thou wilt go to Paradise — to that place sepa- 
rate and invisible — but where thou shalt be with Christ, 
and be present with the Lord ; anticipating in constant 
desire, in rapturous hope, the resurrection at the last 
day. Then he who holds the keys of death and hell 
shall say to thy spirit — Go forth — be clothed upon 
with an house that is from heaven ; enter into the joy 
of thy Lord ; inherit a kingdom prepared for thee from 
the foundation of the world. 

Yes — my fellow Christians — this is the joyful con- 
fidence with which we can meet the interesting in- 
quiry — 

What will become of the body when it is deserted 
by the spirit that animates it ? 

What can reason teach us here? She may indeed 
by analogy illustrate and confirm the doctrine of the 
resurrection when it is revealed — ^but as an original 
truth, she knew nothing of it. The tomb received, in 

in a Funeral Address. 1 1 

its dark embrace, the mouldering body; and there 
was no light that dawned on the night of the grave. 
" Blessed then be the God and Father of our Lord 
" and Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath begotten us to 
" a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from 
" the dead."* He is " the first fruits of them that 
" slept" t — and at the great harvest at the last day, 
" those who sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. "J 
— The body, sown in corruption, shall be raised in 
incorruption — sown in dishonour, it shall be raised in 
glory — sown in weakness, it shall be raised in power — 
sown a natural body, it shall be raised a spiritual 
body. — Blessed, blessed be the God and Father of 
our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath begotten us to this 
lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from 
the dead. 

How is all this to be effected? By that mighty 
power which raised up Christ from the dead. Here 
we take our stand — on the omnipotence of God — and 
defy every attack against the doctrine of the resurrec- 
tion. We laugh to scorn all attempts to wrest from 
us our hope, through a supposed impossibility of the 
resurrection, as puny struggles against the omnipotence 
of God. Did he not at first constmct a human form 
from the dust of the earth ? Did he not breathe into 
a mass of clay the breath of life ? And when he again 
speaks, shall it not be done ? Can he not again bring 
bone to its bone, sinew to its sinew, flesh to its flesh ? 
Fear not, Cln-istian ! thy dust may be scattered to tlie 

♦ 1 Pet. i. 3. +1 Cor. xv. 20. i 1 Thess. h\ 14. 

12 The State of the Departed, 

winds of heaven — But thy God is there. It may re- 
pose in the lowest abysses of the grave — He is there. 
It may dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea — Even 
there his hand shall lead thee, his right hand shall hold 
thee, and bring thee forth, incorruptible and glorious, 
like unto that body which now receives the homage 
of the angels around the throne. Fear not — thy Re- 
deemer is almighty ; and thou shalt be raised at the 
last day. 

Let us comfort one another with these words — 

Our venerable Father has gone. In the bosom of 
Abraham, in the paradise of God, in the custody of 
the Lord Jesus, his soul reposes; waiting in peace 
and joy its " perfect consummation and bhss in God's 
*' eternal and everlasting glory." Soon the sentence 
that sin has brought on the whole human race is to 
be pronounced on the revered remains before us — 
" Earth to earth — ashes to ashes — dust to dust." 

But, he lives with us in the memory of his virtues. 
Let us recall and cherish them. Let us keep him a 
little longer with us — not as of late when languishing 
under disease he gradually lost that engaging expres- 
sion which had so eminently characterized him, until 
he at last sunk in the darkness of death — But let us 
view him such as you, people of the congregation, 
beheld him, when he appeared among you as your 
Pastor — such as we, my brethren, beheld him, when 
he exercised over us his paternal authority. 

I should indeed violate that simplicity which in a 
high degree adorned him, if I were to indulge in the 
language of inflated panegyrick. Simplicity was his 

in a Funeral Address. 13 

distinguishing virtue. He was unaffected — in his tem- 
pers, in his actions, in every look and gesture. Sim- 
plicity, which throws such a charm over talents, such 
a lustre over station, and even a celestial loveliness 
over piety itself, gave its insinuating colouring to the 
talents, the station, and the piety, of our venerable 
Father. But it was a simplicity accompanied with 
uniform prudence, and with an accurate knowledge of 
human nature. 

A grace allied to simplicity, was the meekness that 
adorned him — a meekness which was " not easily 
" provoked" — never made an oppressive display of 
talents, of learning, or of station — and condescended to 
the most ignorant and humble, and won their confi- 
dence; while associated with dignity, it commanded 
respect and excited affection, in the circles of rank and 
affluence. And it was a meekness that pursued the 
dictates of duty, with firmness and perseverance. 

His piety arising from a lively faith in the Redeemer 
whom he served, and whose grace he was commis- 
sioned to deliver, warmed as it was by his feelings, 
was ever under the control of sober judgment. A 
strong evidence of its sincerity was, its entire freedom 
from every thing like ostentation. It did not proclaim 
itself at the corners of the streets — it did not make 
boastful pretensions, or obtrude itself on the public 
gaze — but it was displayed in every domestic, every 
social, every public relation. It was not the irregular 
meteor, glittering for a moment, and then sinking in 
the darkness, from which it was elicited; but the 

14 The State of the Departed, 

serene and steady light that shineth more and more 
unto the perfect day. 

He rose to public confidence and respect, and to 
general esteem, solely by the force of talents and 
worth. In the retirement of a country village, the 
place of his nativity, he commenced his literary career, 
and he prosecuted it in the public seminary of this 
city, and subsequently in his private studies, until he 
became the finished scholar, and the well furnished 

This city was the only scene of his parochial labours. 
Here he commenced, and here he has closed his minis- 
terial life.* 

* Bishop Moore was born October 5, 1748, at Newtown, Long- 
Island. He went to school in Newtown, and afterwards in New- 
York, in order to prepare for entering King's (now Columbia) 
College, where he graduated. 

He pursued his studies, after he graduated, at Newtown, under 
the direction of Dr. Auchmuty, Rector of Trinity Church ; and 
he was engaged some years in teaching Latin and Greek to the 
sons of several gentlemen in New- York. 

He went to England in May, 1774; was ordained Deacon^ 
Friday, June 24, 1774, in the chapel of the Episcopal palace at 
Fulham, by Richard Terrick, Bishop of London, and Priest^ 
Wednesday, June 29, 1774, in the same place, by the same 

After his return from England he officiated in Trinity Church 
and its chapels, and was appointed, with the Rev. Mr. Bowden, 
(now Dr. Bowden, of Columbia College) an Assistant Minister of 
Trinity Church; Dr. Auchmuty being Rector, and afterwards 
Dr. Inglis, since Bishop of Nova-Scotia. 

On the resignation of Bishop Provoost, Dr. Moore was ap- 
pointed Rector of Trinity Church, December 22, 1800. He was 

in a Funeral Address. 15 

People of the congregation ! you have seen him, 
regular and fervent, yet modest and humble, in per- 
forming the services of the sanctuary. You cannot 
have forgotten that voice of sweetness, and of melody, 
yet of gravity and solemnity, with which he excited 
while he chastened your devotions ; nor that evangelical 
eloquence which, gentle as the dew of Hermon, in- 
sinuated itself into your hearts. 

His love for the Church was the paramount principle 
that animated him. He entered on her service in the 
time of trouble. Steady in his principles, yet mild 
and prudent in advocating them, while he never sacri- 
ficed consistency, he never provoked resentment. In 
proportion as adversity pressed upon the Church, was 
the firmness of the affection with which he clung to 
her. And he hved until he saw her, in no inconsider- 
able degree by his counsel and exertions, raised from 

unanimously elected Bishop of the Protestant Episcopal Church 
in the State of New-York, at a special Convention, in the city of 
New- York, September 5, 1801; and was consecrated Bishop at 
Trenton, New-Jersey, in St, Michael's Church, Friday, September 
11, 1801, by the Right Rev. Bishop White, of Pennsylvania, Pre- 
siding Bishop; the Right Rev. Bishop Clagget, of Maryland ; and 
the Right Rev. Bishop Jarvis, of Connecticut. 

He was attacked by a paralysis, in February, 1811; and for the 
last two or three years repeated attacks gradually weakened and 
disabled him, until he expired, at his residence at Greenwich, near 
New-York, on Tuesday evening, the 27th of February, I8l6, in 
the 60th year of his age. The duties of the Episcopal office in 
this diocese have been discharged by the author of this address as 
Assistant Bishop, since his consecration, in May, 1811. [1816. 
And after the decease of Bishop Moore he became the sole Bishop 
of the diocese.] 

16 The State of the Departed^ 

the dust, and putting on the garments of glory and 

It was this affection for the Church which animated 
his Episcopal labours — which led him to leave that 
family whom he so tenderly loved, and that retirement 
which was so dear to him, and where he found, while 
he conferred enjoyment, and to seek in remote parts 
of the diocese for the sheep of Christ's fold. I know 
that his memory lives where I have traced the fruits 
of his labours. 

My brethern of the Episcopal clergy ! I need not 
tell you how mucli prudence, gentleness, and affeciion, 
distinguished his Episcopal relation to you. 

We are not without many recent monitions of that 
summons which we shall all receive — Give an account 
of thy stewardship. A Presbyter whose worth and 
usefulness, from his vicinity to us, are well known, 
has been recently taken from us.* But a few months 
since, and this temple witnessed your attendance on the 
last solemn offices of a venerable Father. f The re- 
mains of another are now before us. With the excep- 
tion of one,J to whom we still look with reverence, 
who was the companion of his youth, the associate of 
his early labours, and the sympathizing friend of his 
old age, he is the last in this diocese of those venerable 
men who derived their ordination from the Parent 
Church, and whose characters are marked by attach- 
ment to evangelical truth in connexion with primitive 

* The Rev. Elias Cooper, Rector of St. John's Church, Yonkers, 
t The Right Rev. Bishop Provoost. 
\ The Rev. Dr. Bowden. 

in a Funeral Address. 17 

order. My brethren — let not their principles descend 
with them to the grave. Soon our course will be 
finished; our account will at the great day be demand- 
ed ; and how awful the responsibility of those to whom 
Christ hath intrusted the charge of " the sheep for 
*' whom he shed his blood, of the congregation which 
" is his spouse and body." 

People whom I see before me ! you have an account 
to render — an account of the use which you have made 
of your talents, your time, your privileges ; of the 
means of grace and salvation. Animating is the re- 
flection that to the servant who faithfully employs the 
talents intrusted to him, there is a resurrection of life. 
But let us remember — Blessed Jesus — let us remem- 
ber, and by a living faith lay hold on thee as our 
refuge — thou hast declared, there is the resurrection 
of damnatioTu 




1 HE author of the preceding address having been 
naturally led, in the consideration of the inquiry con- 
cerning the condition of the soul after its departure 
from the body, to introduce the doctrine of a separate 
state between death and the resurrection, it seems pro- 
per more fully to explain and estabhsh the sentiments 
advanced on this subject. 

He has reason to believe that the doctrine is not ge- 
nerally understood ; and that, therefore, it is regarded 
by many as a doctrine of little importance, and of 
curious speculation only; and, by others, as a danger- 
ous novelty, nearly allied to the tenets concerning pur- 
gator)^ held by the Church of Rome. 

It shall therefore be its object to show, 

L That it is a doctrine of the Church of England, 
and of the Protestant Episcopal Church. 

II. That it may be traced to the apostolic age. And^ 

III. That it is clearly revealed in the sacred writings. 

^0 The State of the Departed. 

The doctrine is — that the souls of men do not 
go immediately to Heaven, the place of final blisSj 
nor to Hell, the place of final torment, but remain in 
a state of enjoyment or misery in the place of the 
departed,* until the resurrection at the last day; 
when, their bodies being united to their souls, they 
are advanced to complete felicity or woe in Heaven or 

I. This is a doctrine of the Church of England, and 
of the Protestant Episcopal Church. 

In the rubric before the Apostles' Creed, in the 
American Liturgy, it is stated that the words, " He 
** went into the place of departed spirits, ^^ are con- 
sidered as words of the same meaning with '* He de- 
" scended into Hell." 

In the prayer for Christ''s Church militant in the 
communion service, we are taught to beseech God 
that " we, with all those vrho have departed this life in 
" his faith and fear, ma^ be partakers of his heavenly 
" kingdom," The happiness of heaven is here con- 
sidered as a future event in respect to those departed, 
as well as to ourselves. 

In like manner, in the prayers of the burial service, 
we beseech Almighty God that "we, with all those 
" who are departed in the true faith of his holy name, 
" may have our perfect consummation and bliss both 
" in body and soul, in his eternal and everlasting 

* Styled in the New Testament a^nj, hades, or Hdl; in the 
sense of an invisible place. 

t Styled yimx, gehenna, also in the New Testanient translated 
Helly denoting a place of torment. 

The State of tht Departed, 21 

glory." The faithful who are departed have not yet 
their perfect consummation and bliss both in body and 

II. This doctrine has been maintained by a series of 
Protestant divines eminent for learning and piety, and 
may be traced to the apostolic age. 

Dr. Campbell, of the Preshyterian Church of Scot- 
land, and formerly Principal of Marischal College, 
Aberdeen, in a very learned dissertation prefixed to 
his " translation of the four gospels," on the words 
" '»hi and y£'£v»«," maintains and vindicates this doc- 
trine of an intermediate state. His arguments on this 
point are full, clear, forcible, and conclusive. 

Dr. Macknight, of the same Church, the author of a 
Harmony of the Gospels ., and of a New Translation of 
the EpistleSy with a Commentary and Notes^ in various 
parts of the latter work maintains, that the righteous do 
not enter on the bliss of Heaven until the final judg- 
ment, and of course that they must, in the interval, 
abide in a separate place. In a note on Hebrews xi. 40, 
he observes, " The apostle's doctrine, that behevers are 
" all to be rewarded together^ arid at the same time, is 
" agreeable to Christ's declaration, who told his dis- 
" ciples that they were not to come to the place he was 
" S^^^S ^"^^y to prepare for them, till he returnedfrom 
" heaven^ to carry them to it." John xiv. 3 — '''' If I 
" go and prepare a place for you, I will come again arid 
" receive you unto myself that where I am, there ye 
" may be a/^o."— Farther, that the righteous are not to 
he rewarded till the end of the world, is evident from 
Christ's words, Matthew xiii. 40, 43. — In like manner. 

22 The State of the Depaded. 

St. Peter hath told us, that the righteous are to be 
made glad with their reward, at the revelation of Christy 
1 Peter iv. 13, when they are to receive a crown of 
glory, that fadeth not axvay, 1 Peter v. 4. — John also 
tells us, that when he shall appear, xve shall be made like 
kirn; for we shall see him as he is, 1 John iii. 2, See 
Whitb\'s note on 2 Tim. iv. 8. — This determination, 
not to reward the ancients without us, is highly pro- 
per : because the power and veracity of God will be 
more illustriously displayed in the view of angels and 
men, by raising the whole of Abraham's seed from the 
dead at once, and by introducing them into the hea- 
venly country in a body, after a public acquittal at the 
judgment, than if each were made perfect separately at 
their death. 

If the righteous are not to be rewarded till the end of 
the world with ihe glories of heaven, their spirits must 
remain before that event in some separate place. 

Dr. Doddridge, in several passages of his commen- 
tary, shows his belief in this doctrine.* He paraphrases 
the text, (Acts ii. 27,) " Thou wilt not leave my soul 
" in HeW — thus — " Thou wilt not leave my soul, w^hile 
" separated from the body, in the unseen world.'''' And 
in a note observes, that " u^th, (hades) is generally put 
" for the state of separate spirits,'''' into which he con- 
siders that Christ descended. 

In a note of Ridgeley's Body of Divinity, the Ameri- 
can editor, the Rev. Dr. James P. Wilson, of the Pres- 
byterian Church, states, very correctly, that the Hebrew 

* Notes on Heb. xi. 40; 2 Tim. iv. 8. 

The State of the Departed. 23 

and Greek words translated Hell in the passage, " tliou 
" wilt not leave my soul in Hell," (Psalm xvi. Acts ii.) 
" are each taken for the invisible world, or separate 
" state of the good as well as evil, both in the Old and 
" New Testaments ; and this was thought by Jews 
" and Gentiles to be under the surface." Christ's de- 
scent into Hell, he observes, therefore, means, that 
" his soul, when separated from his body, was imme- 
" diately with the separate spirits who are happy, and 
*' so said to be in Paradise. But whether above or 
" below the surface, is uniinportant."* 

It is evident from his commentary on Matthew xi. 
23, and on Acts ii. 27, that Dr. Adam Clarke con- 
siders that there is a separate place of departed spirits. 

There is no doubt that the Rev. John Wesley, the 
founder of the sect of which Dr. Clarke is so distin- 
guished a clergyman, maintains this opinion. In his 
" Notes upon the New Testament," on Acts ii. 27 ; 
Rev. i. 18 ; vi. 8 ; xx. 13, 14, he unequivocally 
avows it. On Rev. i. 18 — "I have the keys of hell 
" and of death," he observes, " that is, the invisible 
" world; the body abides in death, and the soul in 
" hades^ Rev. xx. 13 — " And death and hell gave 
" up the dead that were in them," he explains — 
" Death gave up all the bodies of men, and hades, 
" (hell) the receptacle of separate souls, gave them up 
" to be reunited to their bodies." 

Of the Protestant Episcopal Church — there is a ser- 
mon of the late Bishop Seabury, of Connecticut, on 

* Ridgeley's Body of Divinity, Am.ed. vol. ii. p. 440, 441, note. 

24 The State of the Departed, 

" Christ's descent into Hell," in which the principal 
arguments in support of the existence of a separate 
place of departed spirits are clearly and concisely ex- 

In his Lectures on the Catechism, (page 36,) Bishop 
White, of Pennsylvania, observes, " It comes in the 
" way in this place to notice a very common error 
*' which has even crept into the public confessions of 
" some churches ; as if the beatific vision of holy per- 
" sons, or their being in Heaven, took place on the dis- 
" solution of the body. This is not scriptural. Doubt- 
" less such persons are in peace, in some state answer- 
" i7ig to the Jigurative terms of ' Paradise ^ and ^Abra- 
" ham''s bosom ;' with a measure of bliss^ answering td 
" what St. Paul must have implied, when he spoke 
" of * the spirits of just men made perfect.' Still, they 
" have not yet reached the state intimated by the same 
" apostle, where he speaks of being * clothed upon 
" with our house which is from heaven.* And the sen- 
" timent here expressed is sustained by our Church, as 
" in many places, so especially when she prays in the 
" burial service, for ' perfect consummation and bliss 
" both in body and soul.' But she no where speaks of 
^^ passing immediately from this world to Heaven.''^ 

Of the Church of England — the present Bishop of 
Lincoln,* Dr. Tomline, (formerly PrettymanJ in his 
exposiuon of the 3d article concerning Christ's descent 
into Hell, considers, that by this is meant, " that in the 
" intermediate time," between his death and his resur- 

* Now Bishop of Winchester, 1824. 

The State of the Departed. 26 

rcction, " his soul went into the common receptacle of 
" departed spirits.''^ 

Dr. Scott, in his Family Bible, in his commentary on 
the 16th Psalm, verse 10, and on Acts ii. 27, speaks 
without hesitation of a separate place of departed spi' 
?its between death and the resurrection. 

Dr. Magee,* the celebrated author of " Discourses 
" and Dissertations on the Doctrines of Atonement and 
" Sacrifice," in a very learned note (page 346, &c.) of 
that work, maintains the existence of a region of de- 
parted spirits — of an intermediate state of the soul be- 
tween its departure from this world and some future 
state of its being. 

This doctrine is maintained with his usual acumen, 
force, and erudition, by Bishop Horsley, in the sermon 
quoted in the preceding address, on Christ's Descent 
into Hell. In this sermon he maintains the position that 
Christ " descended to Hell properly so called, to the 
*' invisible mansion of departed spirits, and to that 
" part of it where the souls of the faithful, after they 
" are delivered from the burden of the flesh, are in joy 
*' and felicity."! In the notes on his commentarj'^ on 
Hosea, the same doctrine is advanced. 

The eloquent and pious Bishop Home, in his com- 
mentary on the 10th verse of the 16th Psalm, main- 
tains the doctrine of the place of departed spirits. " Al- 
" though our mortal part must see corruption, yet it 
" shall not be finally left under the power of the enemy, 
" but shall be raised again and reunited to its old 

* Now Archbishop of Dublin, 1824. f Ser. vol. ii. p. 91- 


W The State of the Departed, 

" companion the soul, which exists meanwhile m secret 
" and widiscernable regio?is, there waiting for the day 
" when its Redeemer shall triumph over corruption in 
" his mystical, as he has already done in his natural 
" body." , 

Archbishop Seeker, in his Lectures on the Cate- 
chism, (Lect. 9,) explaining the descent into Hell, ob- 
serves — " The most common meaning, not only among 
" heathens, but Jews, and the first Christians, of the 
" word Hades, here translated Hell, was in general that 
*' invisible world, one part or another of which, the 
*' souls of the deceased, whether good or bad, inhabit." 
" In what part of space, or of what nature that recepta- 
" cle is, in which the souls of men continue from their 
" death till they rise again, we scarce know at all ; ex- 
" cepting, that we are sure it is divided into two ex- 
" tremely different regions, the dwelling of the righte- 
" ous, called in St. Luke Abraham's bosom, where 
" Lazarus was ; and that of the wicked, where the 
" rich man was ; between which there is a great gulph 
*-'■ fixed. And we have no proof that our Saviour went 
" on any account into the latter ; but since he told the 
*' penitent thief that he should be that day with him in 
" paradise, we are certain he was in the former ; where 
" they, which die in the Lord, rest from their labours, 
"and are blessed; waiting for a still more perfect hap- 
ML pines s dt the resurrection of the last day^ 

The acute and learned " author of the Evidences of 
" Natural and Revealed Religion," Dr. Samuel Clarke, 
Rector of St. James's, Westminster, in his " Exposi- 
** tion of the Church Catechism," explains the word 

The State of the Departed. T^ 

Hell in the Creed to mean " the invisible state of de- 
** parted souls." 

Sir Peter King, in his " Critical History of the Apos- 
" ties' Creed," proves, at some length, and with great 
clearness and force, the existence of a place of departed 
spirits, into which Christ descended, in the interval be- 
tween his death and his resurrection. 

Among the sermons of the famous Bishop Bull, the 
learned author of the Defence of the JVicene Faiths is a 
sermon on " the middle state of happiness or misery,'* 
which he explains and defends in the following terms — 
*' The souls of all theyZ/z^A/I^/, immediately after death, 
" enter into a place and state of bliss^ far exceeding all 
" the feUcities of this world, though short of that most 
" consummate perfect beatitude of the Kingdom ofHea- 
" ven with which they are to be crowned and rewarded 
" in the resurrection. And so, on the -contrary, the 
" souls of all the -wicked are, presently after death, in a 
" state of very great misery; and yet dreading a^ar 
'.' greater misery at the day of judgment."* " All good 
" men, without exception, are, in the whole intervai 
" between their death and resurrection, as to their souls, 
*' ina very happy condition; but after \\iQ resurrection 
" they shall be yet more happy, receiving then their full 
*' reward, their perfect consummation of bliss, both in 
>^ soul and body, the most perfect bliss they are capa- 
" ble of, according to the divers degrees of virtue, 
^' through the grace of God on their endeavours, at- 
<' t2uned by them in Uiis life. Qn the other side, all 

• JBisljop MPs Works, vol. i. p. 102, lOS. 

28 The State of the Departed, 

" the ivicked, as soon as they die, are very miserable as 
" to their soids; and shall be yet far more miserable both 
" in sold and body after the day of judgment, propor- 
" tlonably to the measure of sins committed by them 
<' here on earth. This is the plain doctrhie of the Holy 
" iScn^^wre^, and of the Churchof Christ in its first and 
" best ages, and this we may trust to."* 

Bishop Newton, the author of the " Dissertations on 
" the Prophecies/' maintains, at considerable length, in 
a dissertation in the 6th volume of his works, this doc- 
trine of an intermediate state. 

Bishop Pearson, in his " Commentary on the Creed," 
(Art. 5,) observes — " As the sepulchre is appointed for 
" our flesh, so there is another receptacle, or habitation j 
" or mansion, for our spirits. From whence it fol- 
" loweth, that in death, the soul doth certainly pass by 
" a real motion from that place in which it did inform 
" the body, and is translated to that place, and unto that 
" society, which God, of his mercy or justice, hath 
" allotted to it." " It will appear to have been the 
" general judgment of the Church, that the soul of 
"^ Christ, contradistinguished fi'om his body, was truly 
" and really carried into those parts below , where the 
" souls of men before departed ivere detained; and by 
" such a real translation of his soul, he was truly 
" said to have descended into Hell." " We must 
" confess that the soul of Christ was in Hell, and no 
" Christian can deny it," saith St. Augustine. 

Bishop Burnet observes, in his " Exposition" of the 

* Bishop Bull's Works, vol. i. p. 126, 127- 

The State of the Departed, 29 

3d Article, that " by Hdl may be meant the invisible 
*' place to which departed souls are carried after their 
" death.'*'' And, therefore, that by our Saviour's soul 
descending into Hell, is meant " his soul being removed 
" out of his body, and carried to those unseen regions 
*' of departed spirits, among whom it continued till his 
" resurrection." 

The pious and learned Bishop Taylor advances the 
same doctrine in various parts of his writings. In a 
sermon at the end of his " Worthy Communicant," he 
observes — " In the state of separation, the spirits of 
" good men shall be blessed and happy souls. They 
" have an antepast, or taste of their reward ; but their 
" great reward itself, their crown of righteousness, shall 
" not be yet. The confirmation of the saint's felicity 
" shall be at the resurrection of the dead." 

Dr. Whitby, in many parts of his " Commentary," 
and particularly on 2 Tim. iv. 8, advances many argu- 
ments from Scripture, to prove that the final and com- 
plete happiness of the righteous does not take place 
until after the judgment at the great day. He considers 
the immediate ascent of the soul to Heaven, after 
death, as an heresy contradicted by Scripture, and by 
the faith of the primitive ages. And he quotes numer- 
ous passages from the Fathers to prove that the souls of 
good men remain till the day of judgment, in a certain 
place out of Heaven, expecting the day of judgment and 

The learned Bingham, in his " Christian Antiqui- 
" ties," (book xv. chap. 3, sec. 16,) observes, that it 
'.vas the sense of the primitive Church, that " the soul 

30 Tfie State of the Departed. 

*' is but in an imperfect state of happiness till the resur- 
" rection, when the whole man shall obtain a complete 
" victory over deaths and, by the last judgment, be es- 
" tablished in an endless state of consummate happi- 
" ness and glory." 

The same doctrine of the separate state of departed 
spirits is advanced by Wheatley, the author of the 
" Commentary on the Book of Common Prayer," and 
by Jortin, the author of " Notes on Ecclesiastical His- 
" tory," in their sermons. 

Dr. NichoUs, in his " Commentary on the Book of 
" Common Prayer," asserts the same doctrine ; inter- 
preting the descent into Hell, of Christ's descent into 
the place of separate souls. 

Dr. Wall, in his " History of Infant Baptism," (part 
ii. chap. 8,) goes at con^derable length into a statement 
of the doctrine of the intermediate state^ and of the 
opinions of the primitive Christians on this point. 

Dr. Hammond, in his " Annotations" on 2 Tim. 
i. 16, observes — " It is certain that some measure of 
" bliss, which shall, at the day of judgment, be vouch- 
" safed the siunts, when their bodies and souls shall be 
" reunited, is not till then enjoyed by them." 

There can be no doubt that the primitive Church 
held this doctrine of tlie intermediate state. The opi- 
nions of the primitive Fathers are quoted by Bishop 
Pearson on the Creed ; by Whitby on 2 Tim. iv. 8 ; by 
Wall on Infant Baptism, part ii. chap. 8 ; and by Sir Pe- 
ter King in his Critical History of the Apostles' Creed. 
To their works, and particularly to the latter, the inqui- 
sitive reader is referred for information on this point. 

The State of the Departed, 31 

III. The doctrine of a place of departed spirits, to 
which the souls of the righteous and the wicked go 
after death, and where they remain in a state of happi- 
ness or misery, expecting their complete felicity or woe 
in Heaven or Hell, (y/fw*,) after the resurrection at the 
last day, is a doctrine of Scripture, 

The leading arguments from Scripture have been 
already alluded to in the preceding address. It will be 
proper to recapitulate and amplify them. 

In reasoning upon this subject the principle will be 
assumed, that, with the existence of all created spirits, 
is essentially connected the idea of locality. They must 
exist in some place. For, as Bishop Horsley observes, 
(Ser. vol. ii. 89, 90,) " The soul existing after death, 
" and separated from the body, though of a nature im- 
" material, must be in some place : for however meta- 
" physicians may talk of place as one of the adjuncts of 
" body, as if nothing but gross sensible body could be 
" limited to a place, to exist with relation to place, 
" seems to be one of the incommunicable perfections 
" of the divine Being ; and it is hardly to be conceived, 
" that any created spirit, of however high an order, can 
" be without locality, or without such determination of 
** its existence at any given time to some certain 
" place, that it shall be true to say of it, ' Here it is, 
" and not elsewhere.' " 

The following view of the state of the departed is 
also founded on the principle, that the soul between 
death and the resurrection^ is in a state of consciousness. 
The contrary supposition is incompatible with the idea 
of spirit, of which consciousness seems to be an insepa- 

3:2 The State of the Departed, 

rable attribute. It is opposed by the uniform tenor of 
Scripture. Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, all the patri- 
archs and saints who are departed, are represented as 
" living unto God." Of course they must be in a state 
of conscious enjoyment. Moses and Elias appear to 
our blessed Lord on the mount of transfiguration, and 
converse with him. The Saviour promised the peni- 
tent thief, immediately after death, the reward of bliss 
with him in Paradise. And the apostle Paul, blessed 
with the consolations of the divine favour, and with the 
comforts of.the Holy Ghost, looked forward to his state 
after death, when he should " be with Christ, and be 
" present with the Lord, as far better." 

The apostle was not one of those philosophers who 
think that the soul cannot exercise its functions, inde- 
pendently of its corporeal companion. 

The expression sleeps or sleeping^ so frequently ap- 
plied in Scripture to the state of the dead, is evidently 
metaphorical ; derived from the resemblance between 
a dead body, and the body of a person asleep. The 
body is said figuratively to " sleep in the dust of the 
••' earth ;" expecting a resurrection at that day, when 
the dead, both small and great, shall be summoned to 
stand before God. Hence the words cemetery and 
dormitory, from the Greek and Latin words xtiiMiu 
and dormioy to sleep, are applied to the receptacles of 
the dead. 

The comparison between the state of the dead, and a 
state of sleep, is beautiful and appropriate. Sleep is 
that relaxation from the toils and afflictions of life, that 
short suspension of the powers of corporeal sense and 

The State of the Departed. S3 

action, which are succeeded by a more vigorous exer- 
cise of the animal and intellectual faculties. And so 
death, releasing us entirely from our conflict with the 
trials of this mortal existence, and suspending all the 
corporeal functions, is followed by a reviviscence of our 
whole nature, in the active delights and unalloyed glo- 
ries of the heavenly state. 

The term sleep, applied to the state of the dead, de- 
notes not unconsciousiiesSy but a freedom from the cares 
and labours of life ; and, as it respects the righteous, 
expresses comfortable enjoyment^ rest, security, and fe- 
licity. It is a phrase by which, in all languages, the 
state of the dead is denoted. And yet the popular be- 
lief among all nations, assigned consciousness and ac- 
tivity to the departed. 

In SlKtJ^ the SHEOL, or Hell, of the prophets Isaiah 
and Ezckiel,* the departed monarchs rise from their 
thrones to meet and to hail the kings of Babylon and of 

In the «^»5?, hades, or hell, of Homer, Ulysses, hav- 
ing trod " the downward melancholy way," converses 
with the shade of his m.other, and the " forms of war- 
" riors slain."f And Virgil represents iEneas, in 
*' faucibus orci,"J in the jaws of Hell, in the entrance 
of Orcus, or the receptacle of the dead, as encountering 
** variarum monstra ferarum," " of various forms un- 
" numbered spectres." And having passed the bank 

* Isa. xiv. 9; Ezek. xxxi. xxxii. t Odyss. xi, 

% jEneid vi. 273. 


34 The State of the De-parted. 

" irremeabilis undae," of the " irremeable flood," he 
holds converse with the shades of the mighty dead. 

• juvat usque morari 

Et conferre graduni et veniendi poscere causas.* 

" The gladsome ghosts^ 

" Delight to hover near, and long to know 

" What business brought him to the shades below." 

The Jews and the heathens had no idea of the state 
of the departed as a state of insensibility and inaction. 

There may be a metaphysical difficulty how the soul 
can exist in an incorporeal state. But does not God, 
who is a Spirit^ exert an infinite intelligence and acti- 
vity, independently of material organs ? Did not Jesus, 
the eternal Word, exist in the spirituality of the God- 
head before his incarnation ? Does not the Holy Spirit 
exert bis quickening power without the aid of cor- 
poreal instruments ? Are not angels, those ministering 
spirits, ever occupied in fulfilling the commands of the 
great Creator — and what is there corporeal in them ? 
When we can account hoiv the infinite and eternal per- 
sons of the Godhead, and how the countless numbers 
of angelic spirits act independently of body, we may 
expect to determine in what mode the soul acts with- 
out the aid of corporeal organs. 

But can she not thus act ? Undoubtedly. Angelic 
spirits thus exert intelligence and activity. And the 
s,oul thus acts in her present state. Abstraction often 
renders her forgetful of her corporeal companion, and 

* ^neid vi. 487- 

The State of the Departed, 35 

almost independent of bodily functions. While the 
body is locked in the benumbing embrace of sleep, the 
soul wakes, the soul is active, the soul dreams. And 
may there not be dreams in the sleep of death ! 

" To die, to sleep— 
" To sleep ! perchance to dream." 
The sleep of the soul after death, in that sense which 

supposes it to be unconscious, is a modern invention, 
unknown to the ancient popular creed of both Jews and 
heathens, repugnant to reason, and contradicted by 

With these principles in view, that the soul exists 
after death in some place ; and that she exists in a state 
of consciousness ; the following are submitted, as con- 
clusive arguments, from Scripture, of the doctrine of 
the existence of departed spirits in a separate place, de- 
nomiated Hades, or Hell, between death and the resur- 

I. The Scriptures uniformly represent that there is 
but one judgment at the last day, and that the souls of 
men are not allotted to Heaven or Hell until this final 
judgment. Previously to that event, then, the soul must 
be in some other place. See Matt. xxv. 31, 32; John 
V. 28, 29, and xii. 48; Acts xvii. 31; Rom. ii. 16; 
2Tim.*iv. 1. 

II. The happiness of Heaven and the misery of 
Hell are represented in Scripture as complete-^Xhe hap- 

* In the volumes of the Orthodox Churchman's Magazine, pub- 
lished in England, there are several pieces relative to the inter- 
mediate state, and the condition of the soul after death. 

36 The State of the Departed, 

piness or misery both of soul and body. Matt. xxv<r 
34, 41; 1 Cor. xv. 52, 53, 54; Phil. iii. 20, 21; 
1 Thess. iv. 14, &c. ; 2 Thess. i. 7, 8, 9. But until 
the resurrection at the last day, the body is subject to 
the embrace of corruption. Previously to the resur- 
rection, then, the righteous and the wicked cannot be 
in Heaven or Hell. They must be in some other 
place. Their state of happiness or misery must be 
different from its character in the final Heaven of hap- 
piness, and Hell of torment. 

III. The apostle asserts, that the saints of the patri- 
archal and Jewish dispensations have not yet arrived to 
the full glory of which they, with the saints of the New 
Testament dispensation, will finally partake. Conse- 
quently, they cannot be in Heaven, the place of the 
final and perfect felicity of the saints. They must be in 
some separate place ^ waiting for the perfection of their 
bliss. " These," says he, (the saints of old,) " all hav- 
" ing obtained a good report by faith, received not the 
promise: God having provided some better things for 
us, that they without us should not he made perfect.'*''^ 

Doddridge refers this perfection, which the saints 
of old do not yet enjoy, but which they will inherit 
with us, to iht glory of the heavenly state; interpreting 
the words they without us, might not be made perfect, 
of God's " purpose of bringing all his children together 
" to the full consummation of their hopes in Christ 
" Jesus his Son, at the time of his final and triumphant 
*' appearing^"! 

* Heb. xi. 39, 40. f Doddridge on Heb. xi. 40- 

The State of the Departed. 37 

Whitby, in coincidence with the primitive Fathers, 
also maintains from this text, that the souls of the Old 
Testament saints, as well of those who have died under 
the Christian dispensation, are "«o? exalted to the 
" highest heavens;'''' that they " had not received their 
" full reward, yea, that they were not to expect it till 
" the day of judgment."* 

Macknight, in his Commentary on the Epistles, 
advances the same sentiment, and refers to the argu- 
ments of Whitby as sustaining it.f 

Wesley, in his notes on this passage observes — 
" Though they (the Old Testament saints) obtained a 
" good testimony, yet did not receive the great promise, 
" the heavenly inheritance — God having provided some 
" better thing for us, namely, everlasting glory, * that 
" they without us should not be made perfect,' that 
" is, that we might all be perfected together in Hea- 
" ven."t 

As therefore these saints of old who are departed all 
live to God, for God is " their God," and " God is not 
" the God of the dead, but of the living;" and as they 
do not live in that state of final glory in heaven, on 
which they will not enter until the saints under the 
Gospel are admitted to it, at the judgment of the great 
day ; it follows, that all departed saints must live to 
God in some place separate from heaven^ anticipating 
with Joyful hope their final glorification. ^ 

* Whitby on Heb. xi. 40. t Macknight on Heb. xi. 40. 

X Wesley on Heb. xi. 40. 

^ The passage 1 Peter iii. 18, 19,20, relative to Christ's preach- 
ing to the spirits in prison, which was introduced in the preceding 

38 The State of the Departed. 

IV. Another argument for the existence of the de- 
parted saints in a separate place^ is founded on the senti- 
ment avowed in Scripture, that these departed saints 
have not yet ascended to Heaven. " No man,'' says 
our blessed Lord, " hath ascended up to Heaven, but 
*' he that came down from Heaven, even the Son of 
*'■ man who is in Heaven."* Enoch and Elijah were 
translated, according to the foregoing declaration of our 
Lord, not to that heaven to which Christ hath ascended, 
and to which he will finally exalt his saints ; but to 
some separate abode of blessedness and peace. It is 
indeed said, " Elijah went up by a whirlwind into Hea- 
" ven."f But this mode of expression is agreeable to 
the popular belief that the state of the blessed is in the 

address, and more particularly explained in a note, is not here 
adduced in evidence of tiie existence of a place of departed spirits, 
because the interpretation given of this passage rests principally 
on the authority of a single individual. It seems, however, to the 
writer, that a serious and deliberate perusal of Bishop Horsley's 
Sermon on this text will lead, in every case, if not to full convic- 
tion, to at least very considerable confidence in the correctness of 
the interpretation of it, which, with great originality, ingenuity, 
force, and eloquence, he offers and vindicates. 

The learned author of " the Doctrine of the Greek Article,*' 
Dr. Middleton (p. 334 of that work) coincides, if not in all the 
criticisms of Bishop Horsley on this text, at least, in some of the 
most important. Dr. Middleton, in terms equally just and elo- 
quent, characterizes Bishop Horsley — " To various and recondite 
*' learning, to nervous and manly eloquence, and to powers of rea- 
*' soning, which have been rarely equalled, he added a zeal and in- 
" trepidity of spirit, which enabled him to prosecute z. glorious, 
*' though an unpopular career, in an heretical and apostate age." 
Middleton on the Greek Art. p. 334. 

*Jobniii. 13. t2Kingsii. 11. 

The State of the Departed, 39 

material heavens. Heaven cannot signify that region, 
wherever it may be in the immeasurable creation of 
God, which is the scene of the more particular display 
of the divine glory, to which Christ hath ascended, and 
to which all his saints are, at the resurrection, to be 
advanced. This construction of the word would make 
the passage of the inspired historian directly contradict 
the assertion of our Lord. 

Thus also it is said — " David is not yet ascended 
" into the Heavens."* His soul, therefore, must abide 
in some separate region of hope and enjoyment. 

The soul then is not in Heaven or in Hell {x\iQ final 
place of torment J until after the day of judgment. The 
happiness or the misery of Heaven and Hell is the hap- 
piness or misery of the whole man both body and soul, 
which are not united until the last day. The saints of 
old are in joy and felicity, and yet not in complete hap- 
piness, which they will not receive but in company 
with all the saints of the Christian dispensation : and 
these departed saints of old have not yet ascended to 
Heaven. All these considerations prove that there must 
be an intermediate state between death and the resurrec- 
tion, some place distinct from Heaven and Hell (the 
place of torment) where the souls of the departed 

V. This place of the departed is particularly desig- 
nated in Scripture. 

It is the a^5, Hades or Hell^ into which, agreeably 
to an article of the Apostles' Creed, our Lord de- 

* Acts ii. 34. 

40 The State of the Departed. 

scended in the interval between his death and his 

The existence of a place called Hell, into which 
Christ descended, is not only asserted in the Apostles' 
Creed, but in the 3d Article of our Church — " As 
" Christ died and was buried, so also it is to be believed 
" that he went down into Hell." Bishop Horsley ob- 
serves* — " The terms in which the Reformers in this 
"" Article state the proposition, imply that Christ's going 
" down into Hell is a matter of no less importance to 
" be believed, than that he died upon the cross for 
" men ; is no less a plain matter of fact in the history 
" of our Lord's life and death, than the burial of his 
«' dead body." 

The doctrine advanced in this Article of the Creed 
is, that after death, our Lord descended into Hell. 
This must refer to his soiily for his body reposed in the 

As existence in some place is essential to every 
created spirit, the soul of Christ, after death, must have 
had a particular habitation. This could not be Heaven, 
There is not the least intimation in Scripture that our 
Lord ascended there, in the interval between his death 
and his resurrection. On the contrary, his ascension is 
always considered as taking place after his resurrection, 
in his perfect human nature, body as well as soul. In 
the interval, therefore, between his death and his resur- 
rection, the soul of our blessed Lord must have abided in 
some other place than Heaven. 

* Ser. vol. ii. 87. 

The State of the Departed. 41 

There are two texts of Scripture which designate the 
name of this place. 

The language of our Lord to the penitent thief— 
" This day thou shalt be with me in Paradise,"* de- 
termines the fact, that the soul of the blessed Jesus after 
death went to some place, to which, as the habitation 
of the departed spirits of the righteous, the soul of the 
penitent thief was also admitted ; and this place is called 
Paradise. A more particular explanation of this term 
will be given, when the meaning of the general term 
" Z^c//," as denoting the place to which our Lord de- 
scended, is explained. " Thou wilt not leave my soul 
" in Hell; nor suffer thy Holy One to see corruption.'* 

This passage of the 16th Psalm is expressly applied 
by St. Peter (Acts ii. 27,) to our Saviour. According 
to this prediction, the soul of Christ was to be in Hell. 
But he was not in Hell before his death, neither was 
he there after his resurrection. It follows, that in the 
interval between his death and his resurrection^ his soul 
was in Hell. 

There is no escaping from this conclusion, but by 
maintaining, according to the opinion of some com- 
mentators, that the soul here meant, is . not his rational 
or spiritual soul, but merely his animal soul or life; 
that soul in the Old Testament means sometimes a 
dead body ; and that therefore the signification of the 
passage is, thou wilt not leave my life, my dead bodyy 
in thf^ grave; thou wilt raise me from the dead. 

There is no doubt that the words in the orig^inal 

* Luke xxiii. 43. 

421 The State of the Departed, 

Hebrew and Greek, which are here translated soul^ are 
used for the animal life, or the dead body of a man. 
But they also denote the rational souly the soul properly 
so called « 

The word translated soul in the passage as it occurs 
in the 16th Psalm, is in the original tJ'fiJ, nephesh^ an- 
swering to the Greek •*vx^\ (Acts ii. 27.) It occurs, 
Deut. vi. 5 — "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God 
" with all thy heart, and with all thy souP'' fnephesh.J 
Here soul is evidently used in the sense of the rational 
soulj of the soul or mind, properly so called ; that prin- 
ciple within us which thinks, and understands, and 
wills, and exercises the powers, and faculties, and pro- 
pensities of our nature. The Hebrew word nepheshy 
or soulj- is used in the same signification in other pas- 
sages of the Old Testament.* 

But our principal concern is with the meaning of 
the Greek term '^vx.iit corresponding to nephesh. If 
this is used by the writers of the New Testament to 
denote the rational and immortal soul; as St. Peter 
rendered the Hebrew word (nephesh) by this term; 
it will follow that he understood soul in this passage of 
the rational and immortal soul of Christ. The follow- 
ing passage establibhes the use of the word ^^t/;^;„\ or 
soul, to denote the rational and immortal part of our 
nature: " Fear not them which kill the body, but are 
" not able to kill the soul {-^vx^i) ; but rather fear him 
" which is able to destroy both soul {;^vx^) and body 
*' in hell," (y/tw*, gehenna, not «^«, Matt. x. 28,) that 

* Deut. iv. 29 ; Psalm xxiv. 4, &c. 

The State of the Departed, 43 

Is, to punish in the torments of hell the spiritual and 
immortal part of man as well as his corporeal nature. 
It is applied to the human soul or spirit, as distin- 
guished from his body in other passages of Scrip- 

Since, then, the words translated soul are used in the 
original to denote the spiritual and immortal part of 
man, we are justified, unless some sufficient reasons 
are assigned to the contrary, in thus interpreting them, 
in the passage which speaks of the soul of our- blessed 
Lord not being left in Hell. 

* Matt. xi. 29; Matt. xxvi. 38 ; John xli. 27. Schleusner oh- 
serves (Lex. art. -i^vxii} 6-) that the words translated heart and 
mindy spirit and soul, are often joined without reference to any 
subtle distinction in their meaning. Stockius gives animus, the 
rational and intelligent soul, as one acceptation of the word 

Homer uses -i^vx^ to denote that part of man zohich retnains 
after death. Thus, in his Odyssey (book xi. 536, 539,) where 
Ulysses describes his visit to the infernal regions, " -Ivx*}^ Alxxt^ao," 
anima jEacidae, or as we would say, the soul of Achilles ; and 
" ^vx'X'l vExpuiJv," anima mortuorum, the souls of the dead, are 
the terms by which the dead are distinguished. Virgil uses the 
terra anima, corresponding to -^^vx^, in the same sense. Thus, 
(jEn. vi. 264,) " imperium animarum," the empire of Ghosts, or, 
as we would say, of departed souls. " Quidve petunt animce,^' 
What do the Ghosts desire ? or, as we would say. What do the 
departed souls desire ? 

tvxi is applied to the spiritual and immortal part of man, by 
the Greek Fathers. Suicer, in his Thesaurus, states that this word 
is employed by them in its proper signification to denote the 
rational soul, the most noble and excellent part of man, spiritual 
and immortal. He quotes numerous examples of this signification 
of the word from the Greek Fathers, 

44 The State of the Departed. 

There are the most decisive reasons to justify this 
interpretation. For, 

1. If the soul in this passage does not mean the 
spiritual and immortal part oi \Xi2Li\, but is synonymous 
with animul life or dead body, the obvious meaning of 
the passage, as referring to the two distinct parts of the 
human nature of Christ, is lost. The last clause of 
the passage is not a repetition of the former ; there is 
an opposition between them, so far as that they convey 
distinct meanings, and refer to different things. " Thou 
" wilt not leave my soul in Hell ; neither wilt thou suffer 
" thy Holy One to see corruption." But if soul refers 
to the dead body, or to the animal life, the force of the 
passage is entirely lost. If this were the sense of the 
words, as Bishop Burnet observes,* " there will be no 
*' opposition in the two parts of this period ; the one 
" will be only a redundant repetition of the other. 
" Therefore it is much more natural to think, that this 
" other branch concerning Christ's soul being left in 
" Hell, must relate to that which we commonly under- 
" stand by soiiP^ If then his " soul was not left in 
" Hell, from thence it plainly follows, that once it was 
" in Hell, and by consequence that Christ's soul de- 
" scended into Hell." Bishop Burnet considers this 
text as " unquestionable authority that our Saviour's 
" soul was in Hell" 

King, in his " History of the Apostle's Creed," gives 
the same application to the word soul; observing, 

* Exposition of the Articles, Art. iii. 

The State of the Departed, 45 

" Although the word soul may, by a metonymy, be 
" taken in Scripture for the bodj/, yet it cannot he so 
*' understood when it is placed in opposition to and con- 
*' tradistinction from it, as in this text it is."* 

2. According to the interpretation which is here 
opposed, there is no account given of the soul of Christ, 
in the interval between his death and his resurrection — 
the whole passage merely affirms the condition of his 
body. But if the former clause of the passage be in- 
terpreted of the soul or spiritual part of the human 
nature of Christ, as the latter undoubtedly is of his 
body, there is then a full account of the condition of 
both parts of his nature. His soul was in Hell, but not 
left there — his bod?/ in the grave, but did not see cor- 

3. It is evident, that some part of the human nature 
of the blessed Jesus, called his soul, was to be left in 
some place called Hell, " Thou wilt not leave my 
" soul in Hell ; neither wilt thou suffer thy Holy One 
" to see corruption." His bodi/ was to be in the grave, 
but was not to see corruption, his soul was not to be 
left in Hell. But if soul means merely his animal life, 
this not being a distinct subsistence, there was no part of 
his nature in Hell. Soul must therefore refer to some 
distinct part of tlie human nature of our blessed Lord, 
which was not left in Hell. The term soul {-^vxti) can- 
not mean his body ; it cannot mean his animal life, 
which was no distinct subsistence : it must mean his 
soul properly so called, the spiritual and immortal part 

* History of the Apostle's Creed, Art. Descent into Hell. 

46 The State of the Departed, 

of his human nature. This, his soul, properly so called, 
was in Hell, but was not left there. 

4. This passage was understood of the descent of 
the rational and intellectual soul of Christ into Hell, by 
the primitive Church. Bishop Pearson, in his learned 
work on the Creed, observes,* that it was " the general 
*' judgment of the Church, that the soul of Christ con- 
" tradistinguished from his body, that better and more 
" noble part of his humanity, his rational and intellectual 
" soul, after a true and proper separation from his flesh, 
'' was really and truly carried into those parts below, 
" where the souls of men before departed were de- 
" tained; and by such a real translation of his soul, 
*' he was truly said to have descended into Hell." 
Tiiere is nothing in which the leathers more agreed 
than this, a real descent of the soul of Christ unto the 
habitation of the souls departed. The persons to whom, 
and end for which, he descended, they differ in ; but 
as to a local descent into the infernal parts, they all 
agree. Referring to the passage under consideration, 
" Thou wilt not leave my soul in Hell," Bishop Pear- 
son does not hesitate to observe, " From this place, the 
" article (of the descent into Hell) is clearly and infalli- 
" bly deduced thus : If the soul of Christ were not left 
" in Hell at his resurrection, then his soul was in Hell 
" before his resurrection. But it was not there before 
" his death ; therefore, upon or after his death, and 
" before his resurrection, the soul of Christ descmded 
*' into Hell ; consequently the Creed doth truly deliver 

* On the Creed, Art. Descent into Hell. 

The State of the Departed, 47. 

" that Christ being crucified^ was dead^ buried^ and 
" descended into HtlL For as his fiesh did not see 
" corruption by virtue of that promise and prophetical 
" expression, and yet it was in the grave, the place of 
" corruption, where it rested in hope until his resurrec- 
" tion ; so his soul., which was not left in He 11, by 
" virtue of the like promise or prediction, was in that 
" Hell, where it was not left, until the time that it was 
" to be united to the body for the performing of the 
" resurrection. fFe must therefore confess from hence, 
" that the soid of Christ was in Hell; and no Christian 
" can deny it, saith St. Augustine, it is so clearly de- 
" livered in this prophecy of the Psalmist, and applica- 
" tion of the Jpostle.^^^ 

* Bishop Pearson on the Creed, Art. He descended into Hell, 
Oxford edit. 1797, p. 358—360. This Article, He descended into 
Hell, was not introduced into the Creed, until about three hundred 
years after Christ. But it will not follow that Christ's descent 
into Hell was not previously a doctrine of the Church. On the 
contrary, the Fathers, from the early ages, maintained this opinion, 
as Bishop Pearson observes, who quotes at length their opinions. 
The clause was first introduced into the Creed of the Church of 
Aquiliea, in which there was no mention of Christ's burial. It 
would not hence follow, that these words referred solely to the 
burial of Christ's body : since his " descent into Hell," neces- 
sarily denoting the descent of his body into the grave, tnighi also 
imply the descent of his soul into Hades or Hell, As Bishop 
Pearson observes, " Although they were first put into the Aquiliean 
" Creed, to signify the burial of Christ, and those which had only 
" the burial in their Creed, did confess as much as those which 
" without the burial did express the descent; yet since the Roman 
" Creed hath added the descent unto the burial, and expressed that 
" descent by words signifying more properly Hell, it cannot h& 
" imagined that the Creed, as it now stands, should signify only 

48 The State of the Departed. 

Sir Peter King*^ gives the same view of the opinion 
df the Primitive Fathers — " They apply this action of 
" our Saviour's to his soul alone, employing for this 
•' end that text of the Apostle cited by him from the 
*' Psalmist, on which this Article is principally founded 
"(Acts ii. 27.) By the soul of Christ, which God 
" would not leave in H-U, they understood the rational 
*' part of man, that spirit which distinguishes him from 
" a brute, and subsists after its disunion and departure 
" from the body." 

5. It may be observed — That by denying, that the 
descent of Christ into Hell in this passage, is meant of 
the descent of his soul properly so called, we give up 
the principal argument from Scripture, of the ex^iatence 
of the human soul of Christ. Apf)lhnaris, an early 
heretic, denied to Christ an intellectual or rational soul, 
the place of which was supplied, he said, by the IFordy 
or Divinity. Against this heresy, the orthodox urged 
the text relative to Christ, " Thou wilt not leave my 
" soul in Hell." Christ's descent into Hell, they con- 
sidered as an undeniable proof that he had a reasonable 
soul. For it could not be his deity that descended into 
Hell ; that being omnipresent, was incapable of any 

" the burial of Clirist by his descent into Hell." " The ancient 
" Church did certainly believe that Christ did some other way 
'•descend beside his burial ; Ruffinus himself, (an ecclesiastical 
" writer) though he interpreted those words of the burial only, 
" yet in the relation of what was done at our Saviour's death, 
" makes mention of his d'-icfnt aiti) H 11 hesidp, and distinct from 
" his sepulture ; and those, who in after ages added it to the 
^' burial, did actually believe that the soul of Christ descended.'* 
* History of the Apostle's Creed, Descent into Hell. 

The State of the Departed. 49 

local transition. It could not be his body; for that was 
committed to the tomb. It must have been his reason- 
able^ human soul, \vhich descended there, since there is 
no evidence of the existence, after death, of the animaly 
or sensitive part of our nature, vvhich we have in com- 
mon with the brutes. To maintain, then, that the text — 
" Thou wilt not leave my soul in Hell," is meant of the 
sensitive nature, the animal life of Christ, subverts en- 
tirely the principal argument in favour of the reality of 
his reasonable soul, which the Catholic or universal 
Church urged against the ApoUinarian heresy. As Bi- 
shop Pearson, in his reasoning on this subject, observes, 
— " If it could have been answered by the heretics, as 
" it is now by many, that his descent into Hell had no 
" relation to his soul, but to his bodi/ only, ivhich de- 
" scended into the grave ; or that it was not a real, but 
" viruial descent, by which his death extended to the 
*' destruction of the powers of Hell ; or that his soul 
" was not his iJitellectwil spirit, or immortal soul, but 
*' his living soul, which descended into Hell ; that is, 
" continued in the state of death ; I say, if any of these 
" senses could have been affixed to this Article, (the 
" descent into Hell,) the Apollinarian's answer might 
*' have been sound, and the Catholic's argument of no 
" validity. But since those heretics did all acknow- 
" ledge this Article ; since the Catholic Fathers did 
" urge the same to prove the real distinction of the 
" soul of Christ, both from his divinity, and from his 
" body, because his body was really in the grave, when 
" his soul was really present with the souls below ; it 
" foUoweth that it was the general doctrine of the 

66 The State of the Departed. 

" Church, that Christ did descend into Hell, by a local 
" motion of his soul separated from his body to the 
*' places below, where the souls of men departed were." 

*' Nor can it be reasonably objt-cted that the argu- 
'^ ment of the Fathers was of equal force against these 
" heretics, if it be understood of the animal soul, as it 
" would be if it were understood of the rational; as if 
" those heretics had equally deprived Christ of the ra- 
" tional and animal soul. For it is most certain that 
" they did not deprive Christ of both ; but most of the 
" Apoilinarians denied an human soul to Christ only 
" in respect to the intellectual part, granting that the 
" animal soul of Christ was of the same nature with 
" the animal soul of other men. If, therefore, the Fa- 
" thers had proved only that the animal soul of Christ 
" had descended into Helly they had brought no argu- 
" ment at all to prove that Christ had an human intel- 
" lectual soul. It is, therefore, certain, that the Catholic 
" Fathers, in their opposition to the Apollinarian here- 
" tics, did declare, that the intellectual and immortal 
'* soul of Christ descended into HelW"^ 

If we deny the descent of the soul of Christ, pro- 
perly so called, into Hell^ we relinquish the principal 
argument in favour of the doctrine of the real incarna- 
tion of Christ, against the heretics which have assailed 
it. The Apoilinarians and Nestorians denied to Christ 
a rational soul. They maintained that the two natures 
in Christ, the divine and the human^ were not united, 
but that God dwelt in Christ as his temple, supplying 

* Pearson on the Creed, vol. i. p. 35^, 360. Oxford edit. 1797. 

The State of the Departed, 51 

the place of the rational soul. And the Eutychians, 
on the contrary, asserted the confusion of natures in 
Christ ; so that there was in him but one nature — the 
divine. In opposition to these heresies, the true doc- 
trine of the incarnation is, that Jesus Christ is " per- 
*' feet God and perfect man ; of a reasonable soul and 
" human flesh subsisting ; and as the reasonable soul 
" and flesh is one man, so God and man is one Christ.'* 

Bishop Pearson observe** — " The true doctrine of 
" the incarnation, against all the enemies thereof, Apol- 
" linarians, Nestorians, Eutychians, and the like, was 
" generally expressed by declaring the verity of the 
" soul of Christ really present in Hell, and the verity 
" of his body at the same time really present in the 
" grave." 

It appears, then, that by considering the passage — 
" Thou wilt not leave my soul in Hell," as indicating; 
not the intellectual soul, but the animal soul or Ife ; 
and not the place of departed spirits, but merely the 
graves we shall vary from the belief of the universal 
Church in the earlier ages, and relinquish the principal 
argument against many of the most dangerous here- 
sies relative to the person and nature of our blessed 

It was necessary to go into this view of the subject, 
because it is maintained by many useful and able com- 
mentators and critics, that this passage merely denotes, 
thou wilt not leave my life in the grave. Dr. Whitby, 

• Vol. ii. p. 306v 

62 The State of the Departed. 

at considerable length, maintains this opinion, which is 
also lield b^- the learned Parkhurst, and others. It 
ou,^ht to be observed, however, that Whitby and Park- 
burst are strong advocates for an intermediate state ; 
and the former admits that the soul of Christ was in 
Paradise after his death. " The Scripture doth assure 
" us, that the soul of the Holy Jesus, being separated 
'• from his body, went to Paradise."* (Luke xxiii. 43.) 

The opposite construction of this passage, as appli- 
cable to the descent of the rational soul of Christ to 
Hell, is supported by the opinion of the primitive Fa- 
thers and Commentators ; and of modern Critics and 
Expositors of great name, among whom rank, Bishop 
Pearson, Bishop Horsley, Dr. Campbell, Dr. Dod- 
dridge, and Dr. Adam Clarke.f 

Bishop Pearson's views of this passage have been 
already fully stated. 

Bishop Horsley observes^ — that " these words of the 
" Creed, ' he descended into Hell,' declare what was 
" done by his rational soul in its intermediate state." 
And afterwards, quoting the passage which has been 
under discussion, " Thou wilt not leave my soul," &c. 
proceeds thus — " From this text, if there were no 

* Whitby's Com. vol. ii. p. 267". 

t None of these authors, however, present iifuH and particular 
answer to the formidable argument, urged with great force by 
respectable Commentators and Critics, that soul in this passage 
means the animal life. Bishop Horsley takes no notice of it. 
Dr ' 'amphcll merely adverts to it. Bishop Pearson answers it 
somewhat in detail. King incidently notices it in his History of 
the Apostles' Creed. 

t Ser. vol. ii. p. SS. 

The State of the Departed. oS 

'^ other, tJ\e Article, in the sense in which we have ex- 
" plained ?>, is clearly and infallibly deduced; for if the 
'* soul of Christ were not left in Hell at his resurrec- 
^ tion, then it was in Hell before his resurrection. But 
" it was not there either before his death or after his 
" resurrection, for that never was imagined : therefore 
" it descended into Hell after his death, and before his 
" resurrection ; for as his flesh, by virtue of the divine 
" promise, saw no corruption, although it was in the 
" grave, the place of corruption, where it remained 
" until his resurrection ; so his soul, which, by virtue 
" of the like promise, was not left in Hell, was in that 
" Hell where it was not left, until the time came for its 
" reunion to the body for the accomplishment of the 
" resurrection. Hence it is so clearly evinced, that the 
" soul of Christ was in the place called Hell, ' that 
*' none but an infidel,' saith St. Augustine, ' can deny 
« it' " 

Dr. Campbell vindicates the same construction of 
this passage. 

Dr. Doddridge paraphrases the words — " Thou wilt 
*^-' not leave my soul in Hell" — thus — " I am fully satis- 
*' fied, that thou wilt not leave my soul while separated 
'■^ from it (the body J in the unseen world.'''' And, in 
opposition to the opinion advanced by Whitby, and 
others, that the soul here is put for the animal life or 
dead body, and asi?, Hades, for the grave, he observes, 
in a note — " As -^vx,-^, Avhich is the word here used, 
" can hardly be thought to signify a dead body, and 
" ih', is generally put for the state of separate spirits, 

54 The State of the Departed. 

" the version here given seemed preferable to any 
" other." 

Dr. Adam Clarke interprets the same words of the 
soul of Christ not being left in the state of separate 

The opposite construction which has been given of 
this passage, and the hostility to the doctrine of an in- 
termediate state, and of the descent of Christ into Hell, 
among many Protestant divines, appear to have arisen 
from an apprehension of countenancing the papal doc- 
trine of purgatory, to which, however, the primitive and 
correct doctrine of the state of separate spirits gives no 

But it is of primary importance, in this discussion, 
to ascertain the correct meaning of the word which, in 
this pasSMge, and many others of the sacred writings, is 
translated Htil. If this mean a place of departed spi- 
rits, then of course the existence of this place is not 
only estiblished, but also the descent of the spirit or 
souIq^ Clirist into the same abode. 

The word Hiil, in our English translation of the 
Bible, answers in the original to two distinct words, 
«^>,5, (Hebrew, Sheol^J Hades, denoting merely a se- 
cret, invisible place, and hence applied to the place of 
departed spirits; and yim», Gehenna, signifying the 
place of final torment. 

There can be no doubt that the acceptance of the 
word «i'i^;}?, or H^r.i, Hades, among the Greeks, was the 
place of the departed. In the commencement of the 

The State of the Departed. 55 

Iliad, it was to " «'/^*." " Pluto's gloomy reign," that 
the anger of Achilles hurled 

" The souls of mighty chiefs untimely slain." 

Answering to the H^r^ of the Greeks, is the Orcus of 
the Romans. It was the boast of Virgil's heroes.* 

" Multos Danaum dimittimus Oreo." 

" With gods averse we follow to the fight, 

" And undistinguished in the shades of night, 

" Mix with the foes, employ the murdering steel, 

" And plunge whole squadrons to the depth of HelV^ 

The existence of a region where the departed shades 
resided, was the popular belief of the Greeks and Ro- 
mans, and was denoted by the uihi, or «^»>5, of the 
one, and the Orcus, or inferif of the other. And it is 
reasonable to conclude, that the Apostles would use 
the word ihi^ Hades, in its popular signification, as 
denoting the place of the departed. 

But, to denote the place of final torment, they em- 
ployed another, yeewa, Gehenna, a Compound of two 
Hebrew words, signifying the valley of Hinnom. It 
was originally a pleasant valley, planted with trees, and 
watered with fountains, near to Jerusalem, by the brook 
of Kedron. The Jews placed there the image of Mo- 
loch, to which they sacrificed their cliildren. When 
these horrid sacrifices were abolished hy Josij.-. r:,e 
pious king of Israel, the place became so abominabie, 

* ^neid Ji. 398, 

5f) The Slate of the Departed. 

that they cast there the carcases of animals, and the 
dead bodies of criminals, where they \vere consumed 
by fire. Hence it was used, to denote the place of future 
torment, not only by the Jews, but by Christ and his 
Apostles. Tophet, from Toph, which signifies a drum, 
was a name also applied to this place ; the noise of 
drums being employed at the sacrifices, to drown the 
cries of the victims. And hence Tophet also, among 
the Jews, denoted the place of future punishment.* 

These two words, ^-J";}? and y/sw*, Hades and Ge- 
henna., are indiscriminately rendered Hell in the New 
Testament. But wherever the former word Hades is 
translated Hell, the place of departed spirits is meant ; 
and wherever Gehenna is rendered Hell, the place of 
the damned is denoted. 

The idea of the place of torment is now commonly 
connected with this word Hell. But the original mean- 
ing of the word " Hell" was no more than a hidden or 
invisible place, from the Saxon word " helan," to cover 
over. In this acceptation it is used as the translation of 
the Greek word aS'^, Hades. Dr. Doddridge observes 
— (Com. on Rev. i. 18,) — " Our English, or rather 
" Saxon word Hll, in its original signification (though 
" it is now understood in a more limited sense,) exactly 
" answers to the Greek word Hades ^ and denotes a 
" concealed or unseen place, and this sense of the word 
'.' is still retained in the eastern, and especially the west- 
" ern counties of England ; to hell over a thing, is to 

* See Srlileusnerh Lexicon, Art. rawa, and Campbell's Prelim. 
Dissert. Part ii. 1, and Calmet's Diet. Art. Gehenna and Tophet. 

The State of the Departed. 57 

" cover it." Dr. Campbell observes — (Prelim. Dis- 
sertations, vi. part ii. 2,) — " The term ahi. Hades, was 
" written anciently ilhiy ab a priv. et ti^et video, and 
" signifies obscure^ hidden^ invisible. To this the word 
" Hf'l/, in its primitive signification, perfectly corres- 
" ponded. For at first it denoted only what was secret 
" or coTicealed. This v\ ord is found with little varia- 
" tion of form, aiid precibclv in the same meaning, in 
*' all the Teutonic dialects." " The term Hades im- 
" plies, properly, neither Hell nor the grave, but the 
" place or state of departed soids." 

" The word Hell, (says Dr. Adam Clarke,*) used 
" in the common translation, conveys now an improper 
" meaning of the original word ; because Hell is only 
" used to signify the place of the damned. But as the 
" word Htil comes from the Anglo-Saxon helan^ to 
" cover or hide, hence the tyling or slating of a house 
" is called, in some parts of England, (particularly 
" Cornwall,) heling to this day, and the covers of books 
" (in Lancaster) by the same name; so the literal im- 
" port of the original word "a^^j was formerly well ex- 
" pressed by it."t 

" The word Hell^ in its natural import," (says Bi- 

» Com. on Matt. xi. 23. 

t Dc. Johnson, in his Dictionary, gives, as one n»paning of Hell, 
" the place of departed spirits, whether good or bad." But Mr. 
Webster omits this acceptation of the word, which is founded on 
its Saxon derivation ; though he professes that his acquaintance 
with the Saxon language, '•■ the mother tongue of the Lnglish," 
qualifies him eminently for accurately defining English words. 

58 jT/ic State of the Departed. 

shop Horsley,*) '* signifies only that invisible place 
" which is the appointed habitation of departed souls 
" in the interval between death and the general resur- 
" rection." 

In this acceptation of the word Hell, as the place of 
the departed J answering to the »^*ii of the Greeks, 
and the Orcus of the Romans, was the term 71X15^» 
SHEOL^ used among the Jews. It is derived from 
7{<tl^", which signifies to asky to crave y to crave as a 

In the first signification of its derivative, simply to 
ask; SHEOL denotes a place which is an object of 
universal inquiry , the unknown mansion about which all 
are anxiously inquisitive. 

In the second acceptation of its derivative, SHEOL 
is represented as a place of insatiable craving; which 
characteristic is frequently assigned it in several parts 
of Scripture. " Hell (Sheol) hath enlarged herself, and 
" opened her mouth without measure," saith the Pro- 
phet, (Isa. v. 14.) " The proud man," (saith another 
Prophet, Habakkuk ii. 5,) " enlargeth his desire as 
" Hell," (Sheol.) 

In the third meaning of the derivative of SheoU to 
demand or crave as a loan^ implying that what is sought 
for is to be rendered back ; " SHEOL is to be under- 
" stood, not simply as the region of departed spirits, 
■^^ but as the region which is to form their temporary 
'* residence, and from which at some future time they 
" are to be rendered up; thus indicating an inter- 

* Sermons, vol. ii. p. 89. 

The State of the Departed. 69 

" mediate state of the soul between its departure 
" from this world, and some future state of its exist- 
« ence."* 

As the region of the dead, or place of the departed^ 
Sheol, or Hell, is used in the Old Testament. But the 
Hebrew word for the grave is 'n jn, Keber, the recepta- 
cle of the dead body, but not of the soul ; and accord- 
ingly, the Hebrew word for soul, Nephesh, is never 
joined with Keher, but with SheoU the term denoting 
the abode of departed spirits.f The Hebrew Sheol is 
never used for the grave, though it is sometimes trans- 
lated by this word. This, Bishop Horsley proves with 
his usual acumen — " Although Keber (the grave) is 
" never used for Sheol, to signify Hell ; there are five 
" texts in wliich the contrary may seem to have taken 
" place ; namely, the use of Sheol for Keber, to signify 
" the repository of the body, rather than the mansion of 
" the departed spirit. These five texts are — Gen. 
" xlii. 38 ; xliv. 29 and 31 ; 1 Kings ii. 6 and 9. Bu^ 
" upon consideration, it will appear, that in every one 
" of these, the thing to be expressed is neither * Hell,' 
" nor * the grave,* particularly, and as distinct the one 
" from the other ; but the state of death : and this state 
" is expressed under the image of a place of residence 
" of the dead collectively. And fcH* this place, taken 
" in the gross, not as divided into the two separate 
" lodgments of the spirit and the carcase, the word 

* See Magee on the Atonement, &c. p. 348, notej and Hors- 
ley's Com. on Hosea, p. 158. 
1 Peters on Job, p. 320. 

60 The State o/ the Departed 

" 7)H^ is used. It is, therefore, very ill rendered by 
" the word 'grave,' even in these texts; and 'Hell' 
" would be a better rendering ; because the only ge- 
" neral place of residence of the dead collectively is 
" that of the departed spirit. The grave is no general 
" place, since every dead body has its own appropriate 
" grave. Perhaps, in these instances, the word Sheol 
" would be best expressed, in English, by a periphra- 
" sis, ' region of the dead,' or ' dwelling of the dead,' 
" or ' the nether regions.' " 

There is yet a sixth text. Psalm cxli. 7, in which we 
read, in the English Bible, of " bones scattered at the 
" grave's mouth ;" but, in the Hebrew — " at the mouth 
" of Sheol." This passage is often alleged, as an evi- 
dent instance of the use of ^^ii^ for the grave. But 
the fact is, that here we have no mention of the grave 
at all. For the Psalmist is clearly speaking of the 
bones of persons massacred, whose bodies never were 
in any grave, but had been left to rot, unburied, upon 
the surface of the earth. And the mouth of Sheol in 
this surface, considered as the entrance of Sheol; 
which, in the imagery of the sacred writers, as well as 
of the oldest Greek poets, is always considered as in 
the central parts of the earth's hollow sphere.* 

The word SHEOL^ and in the Septuagint, Hades, 
first occurs in Gen. xxxvii. 34, and is translated grave, 
Jacob says — " I will go down into the grave to my 
" son, mourning." But the rendering should be — " I 
*' will go down to Hades, to Hell," that is, to the place 

* Com. on Hosea, p. 200^ 

The State of the Departed. 61 

of the departed, " to my son, mourning." The patri- 
arch did not mean that he should go into the grave to 
his son, for then KEBER, which hterally signifies the 
grave, as it is. Gen. xxxv. 20, " and Jacob set a pillar 
" upon Rachel's grave," would have been used. His 
son also he supposed was torn in pieces by a wild beast, 
and, therefore, the idea of his literally going down to 
him in the grave would not have naturally occurred. 
But if we consider the word Sheol as denoting the 
place of the departed, we give a forcible and natural 
meaning to the declaration of the patriarch. 

Bishop Patrick oI:)scrves, on this passage, that 
*' SHEOL must signify the state or place of the dead,^ 
'' as it often doth."t Lowth remarksf — " The word 
*' Sheol cannot be understood of the grave properly so 
" called, because Jacob thought his son was devoured 
*' by some wild beast ; but must be meant of the 
" place where he supposed Joseph's soul was lodged." 
Archbishop Seeker asserts — " The translation into the 
*' grave is wrong ; as if he meant to have his body laid 
" by Joseph's. That could not be, for he thought him 
*' devoured by wild beasts. It means into the invisi- 
" ble state, the state of departed souls ; and in this 
" sense, it is said of several of the patriarchs, that they 
" * were gathered unto their people,' Gen. xxv. 8 ; 
** Gen. xxxv. 29 ; and of ' all that generation' which 

* "Region of the dead " is synonymous with the place of the 
departed, because, as Bishop Horsley observes, (Com. on Hosea, 
p. 200)—" The only general place of residence of the dead col- 
" lectively, is that of the departed spirit." 

I- Patrick on Gen. xxxv. | Lowth on isa. xiv. 9. 

•62 The State of the Departed. 

** lived with Joshua, that they * were gathered unto 
« their fathers.' " 

The learned Vitringa, in his Commentary on Isaiah,* 
quotes this passage, and several others in the Old Tes- 
tament, in which he says the word Sheol ought to be 
translated not grave, but Hell, in the sense of a recep- 
tacle of departed spirits. 

It is almost needless to remark, that the word 
SHEOLy or Hades, in this passage, could not possibly 
mean the state of the damned. 

In the book of Job,t there is a very sublime de- 
scription of the power of the Almighty. *' Hell is 
" naked before him." The word " Hell," in the ori- 
ginal, is Sheoly and means the state or place of the de- 
parted. So it is understood by the learned Commenta- 
tors on Job, Schultens and Peters; by Patrick, by 
Lowth, and by Scott, the latter of whom thus para- 
phrases it — " Neither the bodies which, all over the 
" earth, are laid in the grave, nor the state of the de- 
•' parted souls of men, are concealed from his all-seeing 
« eye." 

Dr. Magee, in a Dissertation on the History and 
Book of Job, annexed to his Discourses on the Atone- 
merit, gives a new rendering of the passage which con- 
tains the above verse. He founds it on the opinion of 
the Jews, who held " Gehenna, or the place of perdi- 
" tion, to be the lowest part of Sheol, the general recep- 
" tacle of departed souls : and that, in order to express 
" the great depth to which they conceive it to be sunk, 

* Com. on Isa. xiv. 9} p. 433. i Job xxvi. 6. 

The State of the Departed. 63 

" they are used to describe it as beneath the waters : 
" their idea being, that the waters are placed below the 
" earth. Tartarus^ in like manner, the Greeks made 
" the lowest part of Hades, (Windet de vita functorum 
" statu."*) 

On this Jewish notion of Sheol, or Hell^ Dr. Ma- 
gee gives a new rendering to the two verses of Job 
xxvi. 5, 6, which stand in our translation thus : — 

5 Dead things are formed 

From under the waters and the inhabitants thereof. 

6 Hell is naked before him, 

And destruction hath no covering. - 

Dr. Magee renders them thus: — 

5 " The souls of the dead tremble j 

" [The places] below the waters, and their inhabitants, 

6 " The seat of spirits is naked before him : 

" And the region of destruction hath no covering." 

" Here I take the souls of the dead, and the inhabitants 
" of the places below the ('abyss of) water Sy to bear to 

* Magee's Dissertations on the Atonement, &c. p. 349- In a 
note to Lowth's Lectures on Hebrew Poetry, (vol. i. p. 2 IS,) it is 
observed—" That the place where the wicked, after death, were 
" supposed to be confined, was believed, from the destruction of 
" the old world by the deluge, the covering of the Asphaltic vale 
" with the Dead Sea,8zc. to be situated under the waters. To this 
" idea," which certainly very naturally accounts for the popular 
belief on this subject, <* there aie allusions in the sacred writing* 
" without number," 

64 IVie State of the Departed, 

*' each other the same proportion, that is found in the 
*' next verse to subsist between the seat of spirits^ and 
" the region of destruction : those of the dead who 
" were sunk in the lowest parts of Sheol, being placed 
" in the region of destruction, or the Gehenna of the 
" later Jews. So that the passage, on the whole, con- 
" veys this— that nothing is, or can be, concealed from 
" the all-seeing eye of God ; that the souls of the dead 
" tremble under his view, and the shades of the wicked 
" sunk to the bottom of the abyss, can even there find 
" no covering from his sight." 

In the sublime passage of the Prophet Zfafa/2, (chap, 
xiv.) where the deceased tyrants are represented as 
rising to meet the king of Babylon, and in the passages 
of the Prophet Eztkiel, (xxxi. xxxii.) where the same 
description is applied to the king of Eg} pt, Hell, 
without doubt, signifies the place of the departed. In 
the Prophet Ezekiel, " the strong among the mighty," 
are represented as speaking to him, the king of Egypt, 
" out of the midst of Hell." The elder Lowth, in his 
Commentary, considers the whole passage as " a poeti- 
*' cal description of the infernal regions^ where the 
" ghosts of deceased tyrants, with their subjects, are 
" represented as coming to meet the king of Egypt, 
" and his auxiliaries, upon their arrival to the same 
" place : Hdl signifies liere the state of the dead.'''* On 
the passage in Isaiah xiv. 9 — " Hell from beneath is 
" moved for thee," Lowth remarks^-" the Hebrew 
" word Sheol^ which our translation renders Hell^ or 
" the grave^ signifies the state of the dead in general, 
" and is indifferently applied to the good and bad.^"* 

The State of the Departed. 65 

" Thus then," as Dr. Magee observes, " in like manner 
" as Hjmer^ in his Odyssey^ sends the souls of the 
" slaughtered wooers to Hades, where they meet with 
" the manes of Achilles, Agamemnon, and other he= 
" roes ; so the Hebrew poet, in this passage of inimut- 
" able grandeur, describes the king of Babylon, when 
" slain and brought to the grave, as entering Sheoly 
" and there meeting the Rephaim, or manes of the 
" dead, who had descended thither before him, and 
*' who are poetically represented as rising from their 
" seats at his approach. And as, on the one hand, the 
*' passage in the Grecian bard has been always held, 
" without any question, to be demonstrative of the 
" existence of a popular belief amongst the Greeks, 
" that there was a place called Hades^ which was the 
" receptacle for departed souls : so this poetic image of 
" Isaiah must be allowed, upon the other, to indicate, in 
" like manner, amongst the Jews, the existence of a 
" popular belief that there was a region for departed 
" souls called Sheoly in which the Reptiaim or manes 
" took up their abode." 

Bishop Lowth, in his lectures and commentary, 
considers this passage as a personification of the grave. 
But the learned Vitringa proves that it is a representa- 
tion, not of the grave, but of Hell^ the receptacle of 
departed souls. 

In his Commentary on Isaiah,* he states that it was 
the common opinion among the Jews, and the Greeks, 
and the Romans, that tliere was a receptacle of separate 

* Vitringa's Com. Isa. chap. xiv. part i. p. 432, 433. 

^C The State of the Departed. 

spirits, to which the Jews gave the name ^IJ^Ji*, Sheol, 
the Greeks li^„r^, and the Latins Inferi, all answering to 
the English word Hell. He quotes several examples 
from the Old Testament to prove that the Jews con- 
sidered Hell as the receptacle of separate spirits, who, 
they thought, were not deprived of consciousness after 
death. And this opinion, he states expressly, was not 

There are some learned men v/ho incline to the 
opinion, that the Jews derived their notions of a future 
state from the Pagan writers. But the contrary opiniors 
is much more probable, that the Pagan views of the 
state of the dead were corruptions of the early patri- 
archal revelations. As the learned Calmet observes,* 
"' The Hebrews thought and spoke almost like the 
" Greeks before Homer, Hesiod, and the most ancient 
" poets of this nation." Moses speaks of " the lowest 
'' Hell.^t Job, « Hell is naked before God."t Solo- 
mon, " Hell and destruction are before the Lord."^ 
Here Hell, as the place of the departed, is spoken of by 
Jewish writers who preceded the most ancient Greek 
poets. In the opinion that the Pagans derived their 
views of the state of the dead from the ancient He- 
brewsj Calmet is supported by Bishop Horsley, and 
by the learned Vitringa.|| 

* Calmet^s Die. Art. Hell. The English edition of Calmet, by 
B^Oyly and Cahoriy is here quoted. The modern edition by Taylor j 
has very seriously mutilated the original work ; though the " Frag- 
^' raents" that are annexed, are many of them valuable additions. 

t Deut. xxxii. 22. | Job xxvi. 5. § Prov. xv. II. 

!| Com. on Isa. xiv. 9. 

The State of the Departed, 67 

The opinions of the ancient Hebrews, and of the 
Heathen at large, concerning the place of the departed, 
are represented at length by Vitringa. A compressed 
statement of his detail of their opinions is given by 
Archbishop Magee,* " That the souls of men, when 
" released from the body by death, pass into a vast sub- 
" terraneous region, as a common receptacle, but with 
" different mansions, adapted to the different qualities of 
" its inhabitants : and that here, preserving the shades 
" and resemblances of the living, they fill the same cha- 
" racters they did in life. — That this entire region was 
*' called by the Jews S/ieoly by the Greeks Hades, and 
" by the Latins Injeri, — That tiiese \vere the notions 
" that commonly prevailed amongst the Jews, he con- 
*' ceives to be fully established by various parts of 
" Scripture : and to this, he thinks, the history of the 
" witch of Endor yields confirmation, inasmuch as, let 
'^' the illusion in that transaction be what it might, it 
" goes to establish the fact of the opinion which was 
" then vulgarly received. — Agreeably to this hypothesis, 
" he contends, that various expressions of the patri- 
*' archs and prophets are to be explained; and to this 
" purpose he instances Gen. xxxvii. 35; Ps. xvi. 10; 
*' XXX. 3; xciv. 17; inallof which, a place where souls, 
" when freed from the body, were assembled, still 
" preserving all their faculties, — is, as he thinks, plainly 
** supposed. — From the Hebrews, he conceives that 
*' this opinion passed to the other people, and became 
^* disfigured by various fictions of their respective in- 

* I^^igee on the Atonement^ p. 346, &c. 

68 The State of the Departed. 

" vention. Thus the doctrine of the Egyptians re- 
" specting Hades, is given in the second book of 
" Herodotus ; where we have the histor_v of Rhamp- 
" sinitus, who, according to the traditions of the Egyp- 
" tians, had visited the infernal regions and returned 
" safe to life. The notion, he says, was variously 
" embellished by the Greek poets : and afterwards, 
" being stripped by Plato of much of its poetic orna- 
" ments, was embodied by him in his philosophical 
*' system. Hence again the Latins and the nations at 
" large, derived their phraseology in speaking of the 
" state of the dead ; for instances of which phraseology 
" he refers to Velleius, Livy, Florus, and others." 

The Greeks and Romans then, had their place of the 
departed, to which they gave the names of i'i<J«« and 
orcus. The Hebrews had their place of the departed, 
which they denominated hMst^ SHEOL; and which 
the Septuagint, in the sense of the Greek «<?;j5, Hades, 
translated by this term. The place of the departed, 
Bishop Horsley observes, is the only " Hell of the Old 
« Testament."* 

It cannot be supposed that the writers of the New 
Testament were strangers to the popular belief of their 
countrymen, and of the Heathen generally, with respect 
to the region of the departed. When they used the 
term uhi, Hades, they undoubtedly used it in its 
settled, universal, and appropriate signification of the 
place of departed spirits. This was the signification 
which the authors of the Septuagint translation of the 

* Bishop Horsley's Com. on Hosea, p. 46. 

The State of the Drpaited. 69 

Old Testament annexed to the term. Except in a 
very few instances, they have translated the Hebrew 
word S/ieol, which occurs in above sixty places in the 
Old Testament, not by e«v«re5, death, by t«>«5, the 
grave, by ^v;^« or f^vn/ztloy, the sepulchre ; but by »S'y,i, 
Hades, the appropriate word for the region of the dead, 
for the place qftJie departed, in a state of consciousness. 
The writers of the New Testament quote from this 
Septuagint translation, in which the word Hades is put 
for SheoL They must therefore have considered Hades 
as expressing, what Sheol does in the Old Testament, 
the place of departed souls. 

The inquiry as to the situation of this place of de- 
parted spirits, cannot be important. It is suffirient to 
know that there is a place of residence assigned them, 
in some part of the vast universe of God. 

Bishop Horsley, with great ingenuity, advocates the 
opinion that the receptacle of the departed is in the 
inner parts of the earth. " It is evident," he says, 
" that this" (the place to which our Lord descended) 
" must be some place below the surface of the earth ; 
" for it is said that he ' descended,' that is, he went 
" down to it. Our Lord's death took place upon the 
" surface of the earth, where the human race inhabit ; 
" that, therefore, and none higher, is the place from 
" v/hich he descended ; of consequence, the place to 
" which he went by descent was below it ; and it is 
" with relation to these parts below the surface, that his 
" rising to life on the third day must be understood. 
'' This was only a return from the nether regions to 

70 The State of the Departed, 

" the realms of life and day, from which he had de- 
" scended, — not his ascension into heaven, which was 
" a subsequent event, and makes a distinct article in 
" the Creed." 

*' The sacred writers of the Old Testament speak 
" of such a common mansion in the inner parts of the 
" earth : and we find the same opinion so general among 
" the heathen writers of antiquity, that it is more pro- 
" bable that it had its rise in the earliest patriarchal 
*' revelations, than in the imaginations of men, or in 
" poetical fiction. The notion is confirmed by the 
" language of the writers of the New Testament, with 
" this additional circumstance, that they divided this 
*^' central mansion of the dead into two distinct regions, 
•^^ for the separate lodging of the souls of the righteous 
" and the reprobate. In this, too, they have the con- 
" currence of the earliest heathen poets, who placed the 
«' good and the bad in separate divisions of the central 
" region."* 

In respect to the situation of Heaven and of Hades, 
Dr. Campbell supposes that the " expressions implying 
" that Hades is under the earthy and that the seat of tlie 
" blessed is above the stars, ought to be regarded 
" merely as attempts to accommodate what is spoken to 
^^ vulgar apprehensions and language."! 

Of the same opinion is Bishop Lowth, who remarks, 
— " Observing that after death the body returned to 
" the earth, and that it was deposited in a sepulchre 
" after the manner which has just been described, a 

* Ser. XX. vol. ii. t Prelim. Diss. vi. part ij. 

Tlie State of the Departed, 71 

*' sort of popular notion prevailed among the Hebrewsj, 
" as well as among other nations, that the life -which 
" succeeded the present was to be passed beneath the 
" earth : and to this notion even the sacred prophets 
'* were obliged to allude occasionally, if they wished to 
" be understood by the people on this subject."* 

From this popular opinion, that the receptacles of 
departed souls were under the earth, arose the use of 
the word descended, in reference to the passage of Christ 
into the place of departed spirits. 

But though with regard to the situation of the re- 
ceptacle of the departed, there may have been an ac- 
commodation to popular notions by the inspired writers, 
we shall pervert entirely their meaning, and indeed 
render it wholly uncertain, if we suppose that this 
accommodation extended to all which they declare 
concerning the state of the dead. The basis of popular 
fiction in theology is, some truth or fact, which imagina- 
tion or superstition may embellish or corrupt, but not 
to such a degree as to disguise it from the judicious 
and discriminating inquirer. And on this principle, 
the truths of revelation may be confirmed, by ascertain- 
ing the prevalence of opinions alUed to them, in the 
mythology of Heathen nations. Thus, in the subject 
under discussion, the correspondence in many respects 
between the theology of the Pagans and that of the 
Jews concerning the state of the departed, corrobrates 
the opinion that both must have had their origin in a 

* Lowth QD Hebrew Poetry, vol. i. p. 163, 

72 The State of the Departed. 

patriarchiil revelation ; and therefore, divested of the 
fictions of imagination, and the corruptions of supersti- 
tion, must, in essential points, be true. 

Whatever be the precise situation of the place of 
departed spirits, there can be no doubt, considering it 
as the general receptacle of the souls of the righteous 
and of the wicked, that they exist there in different 
conditions; and in dffcrent regions of that unknown 
abode ; the one in a state of happiness, and the other 
of misery. 

Although the general name for the receptacle of the 
departed, without particular reference to their state of 
happiness or misery, among the Jews was SlN^, Slieol ; 
among the Greeks, «^jj5, Hades ; and among the Latins, 
Orcus and Inferiy all answering to the English word 
Hell; they all assigned different abodes in this vast 
region, to the righteous and the wicked. 

The Hades or Hell of the Heathen contained the 
souls of the departed, both good and bad. In his 
descent into Hades, Hell, Ulysses not only saw the soul 
of Achilles " y^j^as-Jv;?," joyful, traversing the " u<!-(poh)\t) 
" ;\£<A*«''«;" corresponding with the " amena vireta/' 
\h.e Jlowery plains of Virgil ; but other souls 

a;^vy//Ev«i, fjpoxTO ds K>)dc', fJcacrTri 


" All wailing with unutterable woes."* 

^^ncas, and the Sybil his companion, traverse the 
abodes of the departed — 

* Homer's Odyss. xi. 536, &c. 

The Slate of the Departed, 73 

" Pcrque dotnos Dilis vacuas, et inania regna."* 

" the di-imal gloom they pass, and tread 

" Grim Pluto's courts, the regions of the dead." 

Here they view the different habitatiojis of the wicked 
and the good — 

The gloomy Tartarus 

" The seat of night profound, and punished fiends."t 

And the fields of Eli/xium 

the flowery plains, 

" i he verdant groves where endless pleasure reigns.":j: 

The li&il of the Jews seems also to hnve been dis- 
tinguished into tiuo regions, an iii)per and a lower Hell, 
answering to die Elysium and the Tartarus of the 
poets; the lower Hell being the place destined for the 
souls of the wicked. " Thou hast delivered my soul," 
saith the Psalmist, " from the lowest Hell ;" on which 
passage, St. Austin, in his Commentary, observes — < 
" We understand it, as if there were two Hells, an 
" upper and a lower." Moses describes the justice of 
God, (Deut. xxxii. 22,) " a fire is kindled in mine 
" anger, and it shall burn unto the lowest Hell," 

There is an ingenious conjecture of Peters, in his. 

* Yirg. /En. vi. 269. f Virg. ^(i. vi. 542. 

JVirg.^ 638, 

74 The State of the Departed, 

" Critical Dissertation on the book of Job,"* that the 
place for good souls is denoted in the Old Testament, 
by the phrase which so frequently occurs, of " being 
" gathered to their fathers," or " their people ;" " to 
*' the assembly of good and pious souls, worshippers 
" of the true God, who were admitted into covenant 
" with him, and lived and died in the observance of 
" that covenant ; as the old patriarchs, the ancestors of 
" the Jewish people, did."f 

But the views of the Jews, with respect to a future 
state, were comparatively obscure, because of the im- 
perfection of their dispensation, which was only a 
" shadow of good things to come." 

Agreeably, however, to the representation of the 
place of the departed of the Jews, as consisting of two 
great divisions for die rigliLcuus and wicked, is the ac- 
count of Hadss or Hell which is given in the New 

Though in the parable of the rich man and Lazarus, 
every circumstance is not to be understood literally, 
yet the general design of the parable certainly is to 
show what becomes of the souls of the righteous and 
the wicked after death. Hell is there represented as a 
vast region, which, as the receptacle of depiirted spirits 
in general, contained the soul of Lazarus in Abraham's 
bosom, that is, " gathered to his fathers," in a state of 
blessedness with the father of the faithful; and the soul 
of Dives in torment in Hell, in the lower Sheol. But 

* This work is quoted with respect by Archbishop Magee, Ib 
his Discourses on the Atonement, note, p. 347. 
t Peters' Dissertations on Job, p. 381, 382. 

The State of the Departed, t5 

jn this immeasurable region, the two abodes of the 
righteous and the wicked are " afar off," and between 
them is " a great" and impassable " gulf fixed.'' 
There appears a correspondence between this repre- 
sentation and the Pagan notion of the a^n^, Hades, or 
Inferi, the abodes of the departed. Homer describes 
Tartarus, or the place of punishment of the wicked, as 
Jar remote from Elysium, both which he comprehends 
under the general name of «<'<J'>}5.* 

But notwithstanding the distance between these se- 
parate regions, and his application of the general term 
HadeSj to the dwelling of spirits not in punishment, he 
seems to consider them as parts of the same region of 
the departed, j- 

So Virgil describes Tartarus as a separate part of the 
great region of Orcus, Hell : — 

' Respecit ^neas subito ; et subrupe sinistra 
Maenia lata videt, triplici circumdata muro; 
Quae rapidus flammis ambit torrentibus amnis 
Tartareus Phlegeton, torquetque sonantia saxa/'i 

' The hero, looking on the left, espy'd 

' A lofty tower, and strong on every side 

' With treble walls which Phlegeton surrounds 5 

' Whose fiery flood the burning empire bounds, 

' And press'd betwixt the rocks, the bellowing noise resounds." 

The accordance between the Hell, or place of the 
departed, of the heathen poets, and tliat of the Jews ; 

♦ Illiad viii. 19. + Odyss. xL 

X Virg. Mn. vi. 548- 

76 Tlie State of the Departed. 

and the division of it into two separate- abodes for the 
souls of the righteous and the wicked, are thus clearly- 
established by Dr. Campbell, in the explanation of the 
parable of the rich man and Lazarus. 

" The Jews did not indeed adopt the Pagan fables 

" on this subject, nor did they express themselves en- 

" tirely in the same manner ; but the general train of 

" thinking in both came pretty much to coincide. The 

" Greek Hades they found well adapted to express the 

" Hebrew SheoL This they came to conceive as in- 

« eluding different sorts of habitations for ghosts of 

" different characters. And though they did not re- 

** ceive the terms Elysium or Elysian jieldsy as suit- 

" able appellations for the regions peopled by good 

" spirits, they took instead of them, as better adapted 

" to their own theology, the garden of Eden or Para- 

" discy a name originally Persian, by which the word 

" answering to garden, especially when applied to 

" Eden, had commonly been rendered by the Seventy. 

" To denote the same state, they sometimes used the 

" phrase Abraham'' s bosom, a metaphor borrowed from 

" the manner in which they reclined at meals. But, on 

" the other hand, to express the unhappy situation of 

" the wicked in that intermediate state, they do not 

" seem to have declined the use of the word Tartarus. 

*' The Apostle Peter says,*^ of evil angels, that God 

" cast them down to Hell, and delivered them into chains 

*' of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment. So it 

" stands in the common version, though neither yUvm 

* 2 Peter ii. 4. 

Tlie Slate of the Departed. 77 

■«« nor '<ihi are in the original, where the expression is, 

*' The word is not yiencc ; for that conies after judg- 
" ment, but rccprctpoi, which is, as it were, the prison of 
*' Hades, wherein criminals are kept till the general 
" judgment. And as in the ordinary use of the Greek 
*' word, it was comprehended under Hades ^ as a part ; 
" it ought, unless we had some positive reason to the 
" contrary, by the ordinary rules of interpretation, to 
" be understood so here. There is then no inconsist- 
" ency in maintaining that the rich man, though in tor- 
" ments, was not in Gehenna^ but in that part of Hades 
" called Tartarus, where we have seen already that 
" spirits reserved for judgment are detained in dark- 
" ness." 

" According to this explication, the rich man and 
" Lazarus were both in Hades, though in very different 
<' situations; the latter in the mansions of the happy, and 
" the former in those of the wretched. Let us sec 
*' how the circumstances mentioned, and the expres- 
" sions used in the parable, will suit this hypothesis. 
" First, though they are said to be at a great distance 
*' from each other, they are still within sight and hear- 
" ing. This would have been too gross a violation of 
" probability, if the one were considered as inhabit-iig 
" the highest heavens, and the other as placed ii the 
" infernal regions. Again, the expressions up^d, are 
" such as entirely suit this explanation, and -'lo other; 
" for, first, the distance from each other is mentioned, 
" but no hint that the one was higher in situation than 
" the other ; secondly, the terms, whereby motion from 

78 The State of the Departed, 

" the one to the other is expressed, are such as are 
" never employed in expressing motion to or from Hea- 
" ven, but, always, when the places are on a level, or 
" nearly so. Thus Lazarus, when dead, is said,* 
*' ctvcnx^heti, to be carried awat/^ not av£Vf;t;?v<«/, to be 
" carried up, by angels into Abraham's bosom ; where- 
" as, it is the latter of these, or one similarly com- 
" pounded, that is always used, where an assumption 
" into Heaven is spoken of. Thus, the same writer, 
" in speaking of our Lord's ascension, says,f uH<pepeTo 
" £15 T«v evpxvav ; and Mark, in relation to the event, says, J 
*' ceve>^v<pH m Tov eu^xvev, hc wos taken Up into Heaven, 
" These words are also used, wherever one is said to 
*' be conveyed from a lower to a higher situation. But 
" what is still more decisive in this way ; where men- 
" tion is made of passing from Abraham to the rich 
** man, and inversely, the verbs employed are, hx^etha 
" and hotircfiu, words which always denote motion on 
" the same ground or level ; as, passing a river or lake, 
" passing through the Red Sea, or passing from Asia 
*' to Macedonia. But, when Heaven is spoken of as 
" the termination to which, or from which the pas- 
" sage is made, the word is invariably either in the 
^ first case, «v«/3«i'kv, and in the second, x-xiec^uim^ or 
" Sfcme word similarly formed, and of the same import. 
" Thiss, both the circumstances of the story, and the 
" expressions employed in it, confirm the explanation 
*' I have given. For if the sacred penmen wrote to be 
'* understood, they must have employed their words 

*Luke xvj. 22. fLuke xxiv. 51. t Mark xvi. 19. 

The State of the Departed. 79 

" and phrases in conformity to the current usage of 
*' those for whom they wrote." 

That region of the departed, where the souls of the 
righteous repose, in the interval between death and the 
resurrection, is denominated by our Saviour Paradise. 
" This day," says he to the penitent thief, " thou shalt 
" be with me in Paradise;" not in Heaven, the region 
of the blessed. For, as Bishop Horsley observes* — • 
" Paradise was certainly some place where our Lord 
" was to be on the very day on which he suffered, and 
" where the companion of his sufferings was to be with 
*• him. It was not Heaven ; for to Heaven our Lord 
" ascended not till after his resurrection, as appears 
" from his own words to Mary Magdalen. He was not 
" therefore in Heaven on the day of the crucifixion ; 
*' and, where he was not, the thief could not be with 
" him. It was no place of torment, for to any such 
*' place the name of Paradise never was applied. It 
" could be no other than the region of repose and rest, 
" where the souls of the righteous abide in joyful hope 
" of the consummation of their bliss." 

" Paradise, among the Jews" — observes Bishop 
Bull — " primarily signified the garden of Eden, that 
" blessed garden wherein Adam in his state of inno- 
*' cence dwelt. By which, because it was a most plea- 
" sant and delightful place, they were wont symboli- 
*' cally to represent the place and state of good souls 
" separated from their bodies, and waiting for the re- 
<« surrection ; whom they believed to be in a state of 

* SermonS; vol. ii. 92. 

80 The State of the Depurted. 

" happiness far exceeding all the felicities of this life j 
" but yet inferior to tnat consummate bliss which fol- 
" lows the resurrection. Hence it was the solemn good 
*' wish of the Jews (as the learned tell us from the 
" Talmudists) concerning their dead friend, Let his 
" soul be in ike garden of Eden^ or, Let his soul be 
" gathered into the garden of Eden. And in their 
" prayers for a dying person, they used to say. Let him 
*' have his portion in Paradise, and (dso in the world to 
" come. In which form Paradise-, and the world to 
" come^ are plainly distinguished. According to which 
" notion, the meaning of our Saviour, in his promise 
" to the penitent thief, is evidently this — that he should 
" presently after his death enter with him into that place 
" of bliss and happiness, where the souls of the righte- 
" ous, separated from tlieii' bodies, inhabit, and where 
" they wait in a joyful expectation of the resurrection, 
*' and the consummation of their bliss in the highest 
" Heaven. For that our Saviour here did not promise 
" the thief an immediate entrance into that Heaven, the 
" ancients gathered from hence, that he himself, as 
" man, did not ascend thither till after his resurrection, 
" as our ver} Creed informs us ; which is also St. Aus- 
" tin's argument in his fifty-seventh epistle." 

Dr. Adam Clarke observes, in his Commentarj'-, 
that " the garden of Eden, mentioned Gen. ii. 8, is 
" also called from the Septuagint, the garden of Para-' 
" dise. Hence the word has been transplanted into 
" the New Testament, and is used to signify a. place of 
" exquisite delight. The word Paradise is not Greek, 
." but is of Asiatic origin. In Arabic and Persian, 

The State of the Departed 81 

" it signifies a garden^ a vineyard^ the place of the 
" blessed. Our Lord's words intimate that this peni- 
" tent should be inimediately taken to the abode of the 
*' spirits of the just ^ where they should enjoy the pre- 
" sence and approbation of the Most High."* 

Dr. Whitby considers Paradise as " the place into 
*' which pious souls, separated from the body^ were im- 
" mediately received. ""j* 

Dr. Doddridge also speaks of Paradise as " the 
" abode of happy spirits when separate from the body, J 
" that garden of God which is the seat of happy spirits 
^' in the intermediate state, and during their separation 
" from the body." 

Now, as in Heaven, happy spirits are united with 
their glorified bodies, the place where they abide, when 
separate from their bodies, is not Heaven, but a region 
of the place of the departed, styled Paradise, 

Dr. Macknight states,^ that " the name Paradise 
" was also given to the place where the spirits of the 
" just, after death, reside in felicity till the resurrection; 
" as appears from our Lord's words to the penitent 
« thief." 

It may be asked — is not this view of Paradise, as a 
place of enjoyment to the righteous, and yet a part of 
Hades or Hell, incompatible with the figurative repre- 
sentation of this latter place as an enemy which Christ 
is to conquer, and from whose power he is to redeem 
his people ? — " I will redeem them from the power of 

* Clarke's Com. on Luke xxiii. 43. tWhitby on Luke xxiii. 43. 
t Doddridge on Luke xxiii, 43. ^ Com. on 2 Cor. xii. 4. 


82 The State of the Departed* 

*' the grave," fSheol or Hell,) Hosea xiii. 14. Bishop 
Horsley answers this inquiry — " The state of the de- 
" parted saints, while they continue there," (in Sheol, 
Hades, Hell, the place of the departed,) " is a condi- 
" tion of unfinished bliss, in which the souls of the 
" justified would not have remained for any time, (if 
" indeed they had ever entered it,) had not sin intro- 
" duced death. It is a state, therefore, consequent 
" upon death ; consequent, therefore, upon sin, though 
" no part of the punishment of it. And the resurrec- 
" tion of the saints is often described as an enlargement 
" of them by our Lord's power, from confinement in a 
" place, not of punishment, but of inchoate enjoyment 
" only. * Our Lord will break the gates of brass, and 
" cut the bars of iron in sunder,' and set at liberty * his 
" prisoners of hope.' And when this place of safe keep- 
" ing is personified, it is, consistently with these no- 
" tions of it, represented as one of the enemies which 
" Christ is to subdue." 

Against the opinion, that Paradise is a distinct place, 
from Heaven, it may be urged, that St. Paul speaks* 
of " being caught up into the third Heavens^''^ and 
" being caught up into Paradise.'^'' It was the opinion 
of all the ancient Fathers that St. Paul speaks of twa 
distinct visions, and of course the scenes of these vi- 
sions, the third Heavens and Paradise, are not neces- 
sarily the same. Dr. Whitby maintains that there were 
different visions, and that Paradise is distinct from the 
^ird Heczveus. " The opinion of all the ancients,'^ he 

* 2 Cor, xii. 1— 4v 

The State of the Departed* 83 

observes, " seems to have been this, that he was cauglit 
** at several times into several places. Hence it doth 
*■'' not follow that Paradise is in the third Heaven."* 

The learned Bishop Bull makes the same distinc- 
tion between the visions of St. Paul, and between Pa- 
radise and the third Heavens ;f in which he is followed 
by Dr. Doddridge. | And Dr. Campbell establishes 
this distinction, in the Preliminary Dissertation which 
has been so often quoted. The phrase, being caught 
up^ may be supposed contrary to the usual phraseology 
of Scripture, with respect to Hades or Paradise. But, 
as Campbell observes, the phrase ufvu^a expresses 
more the suddenness of the event, and the passiveness 
of the Apostle, than the direction of the motion. 

The phrase, *' Paradise of God," may seem to de- 
note Heaven in Rev. ii. 7 — " To him that overcometh 
•* will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the 
<' midst of the Paradise of God." " Here," as Dr. 
Campbell observes, " our Lord, no doubt, speaks of 
** Heaven ; but as he plainly alludes to the state of mat- 
** ters in the garden of Eden, where our first parents 
" were placed, and where the tree of life grew, it can 
" only be understood as a figurative expression of the 

* Whitby on 2 Cor. xii. 1—4. 

t Bishop Bull's Sermons, vol. i. 89, 97. 

\ Com. on 2 Cor. xii. 1 — 4. Dr. Macknight, and Dr. /idarn 
Clarke, are favourable to the same opinion ; from which Scott 
differs, because, he says, the happiness of departed saints consists 
in being present with the Lord. As if God's blissful presence 
tould not be in Paradise as well as in Heaver. 

84 The State of the Departed* 

^^ promise of eternal life ^ forfeited by Adam, but re- 
" covered by our Lord Jesus Christ." 

Thus, then, it appears, from the above view, that 
the Sheol of the Old Testament, and the '^hi^ or Helly 
of the New, means the place of departed spirits, where 
the souls of the righteous and the wicked abide, in se- 
parate states of happiness or misery, until the day of 
judgment ; and that into the division of this region 
called Paradise, the abode of the spirits of the righte- 
ous, the soul of our Saviour went after his death. 

The ends of our Saviour's descent, into the place 
of the departed, were of the most important nature. 

1. In this respect, as in all others, he was made like 
imto us. The separation of the body from the soul by 
death, the penalty of Adam's sin, he, as the second 
Adam, underwent. His body was deposited in the 
grave, where our bodies must slumber- And to com- 
plete his conformity to us, his soul went to that place 
of the departed, where our souls are to abide during 
their absence from the body. This conformity, in all 
respects to us, sin only excepted, was a part of that 
humiliation by which he sustained the penalties of our 

2. And thus, as our Redeemer and Head, sanctify- 
ing by his presence the place of the departed, he hath 
divested this secret and retired abode of its terrors, and 
enlightened it by his mercy and grace. The ?rf'A«i «JW, 

Tilt State of the Departed. 85 

the gates of Hades he hath opened ; and by his power 
they become, to the faithful, the entrance to a joyful re- 
surrection of life and glory. 

3. To afford us a pledge of this victory not only 
over death, but over Hades, over Hell, the place that 
confines our spirits during their separation from the 
body, was the last great object of his descent into it. 
" In Hell, in Hades, his soul was not left." Neither 
shall the souls of his people there remain. " He 
*' opened the gates of brass ; he burst asunder the bars 
" of iron ;" and his spirit, disengaged from its prison- 
house, and united to his body, ascended in glory to the 
regions of heavenly light. And when he who still 
holds the keys of Hell, of this invisible receptacle of 
the departed, shall pronounce the sentence, " Go forth," 
the souls of his redeemed shall ascend, in the vest- 
ments of a glorified and incorruptible body, to that 
Heaven where there is " fulness of joy." 

The fact that Christ, in the interval between his death 
and his resurrection, went into the place of departed 
spirits^ being proved, the existence of this place is of 
course established. 

With regard to the position, in proof of the exist- 
ence of the place of the departed, that an appropriate 
term, Utj^, answering to the Hebrew SHEOL^ and to 
the original meaning of the word Hell, as a secret or 
invisible place, is uniformly applied, in the New Tes- 
tament, to this state of departed spirits ; it may be sa- 

86 The State of the Departed. 

tisfactory to review all the passages of the New Testa- 
ment where the word Hhiy Hades, occurs. 

The word «^w, Hades, is found only in eleven 
places, and in all of them it denotes the place of de- 
parted spirits. 

1. It occurs Acts ii. 27, and 

2. Also Acts ii. 31, as applicable to our Saviour's 
soul being in Hell ; the meaning of which, as denot- 
ing the place of departed spirits, has been, in the pre- 
ceding pages, fully considered. 

3. Luke xvi. 23. It occurs in the parable of the rich 
man and Lazarus, in the same signification. See p. 74. 

4. Matt. xi. 23 — " And thou Capernaum, which art 
" exalted to Heaven, shall be cast down to Hell," (e^s 

Heaven and Hell, or Hades, are here figuratively 
used ; Heaven denoting the highest object, and Hell 
or Hades the lowest, according to the notions of the 
Jews and Pagans in regard to the situation of these 
places. Capernaum being exalted to Heaven denotes 
htr flourishing state, and brought down to Hell, her 
low or depressed condition ; even a state in which she 
would be no more seen ; alluding to the signification 
of Hades, as an invisible place. Whitby, Doddridge, 
Schleusner, and Clarke, agree in this construction of 
the passage. 

The State of the Departed, 87 

5. The words occur in the same sense and applica- 
tion in Luke x. 15. 

6. Matt. xvi. 18—" The gates of Hell («-JA«r uh, 
*' the gates of Hades) shall not prevail against it," the 
Church. The expression is here figurative. Hades, 
or the place of the dead, is represented as a spacious 
receptacle with gates, through which the dead enter. 
Hezekiah speaks (Isa. xxxviii. 10,) of the gates of 
the grave or Hades, and Homer speaks of Achilles 
hating [^l^xi v6xy,<rii^) " as the gates of Hell or Hades," 
that is, hating mortally.* The expression, then, " the 
" gates of Hell" (Hades) " shall not prevail against the 
" Church," means, it shall never enter the place of the 
departed, it shall never die, it shall continue for ever. 

" The full meaning of this promise of our Lord," 
says Parkhurstjf " seems to be that his Church on 
" earth, however persecuted and distressed, shoidd 
" never fail till the consummation of all things, and 
" should then, at the resurrection of the just, finally 
" triumph over death and the grave." Dr. Doddridge 
gives the same construction to this passage, and ob- 
serves:}: — " It is most certain that the phrase Wa*? «JW, 
" does generally, in the Greek writers, signify the en- 
" trance into the invisible world.^^ Dr. Campbell, in 
his Preliminary Dissertation, and Dr. Whitby, on this 
text, prove, at great length, that the expression, the 

* Iliad ix. 312. t Parkhurst, Article Hht- 

X Com. on this text. 

88 The Slate of the Departed. 

gates of Hades, denotes, both among Jewish and 
Christian writers, the invisible world: and they esta- 
blish the above construction of this text. 

7. 1 Cor. XV. 5S — " O gi^ave (in the margin, Hell, 
"■ original ah) where is thy victory." The place of 
separate spirits is here meant, from which, at the re- 
surrection at the last day, the spirits of the departed 
shall come forth, to be " clothed upon with their house 
** that is from Heaven." There seems to be here an 
allusion to Hosea xii. 13, which Bishop Horsley trans- 
lates — "Death! I will be thy pestilence. Hell! I 
" will be thy burning plague" — on which he has the 
following note — " Hell, not the place where the damned 
" are to suffer their torment, but the invisible place, 
" where the souls of the departed remain till the ap- 
" pointed time shall come for the reunion of soul and 
" body." The Hebrew word Sheol, answering to the 
Greek Hades, is here improperly translated grave, 
which is denoted in the Hebrew by a distinct word, 
KEBER. "No two things" — Bishop Horsley ob- 
serves — " can be more distinct ; Hell is the mansion of 
" the departed spirit; the grave is the receptacle of the 
" dead body."* 

8. Rev. i. 18—" I have the keys of Hell {thU^h) 
" and of death." The Lord Jesus Christ is here re- 
presented as not only having power over death, to re- 
deem the body from its dominion, but as holding the 

* Com. on Hosea, p. 159- 

The State of the Departed. 89 

keys of Hell, of the place of the departed, from wliich 
he will release them, and reunite them to their incor- 
ruptible bodies. Dr. Doddridge, on this text, para- 
phrases Hf^ll as the unseen world, the invisible state in 
which the souls of men remain until Christ exerts his 
power of raising tlie dead.* The notions of Scott, in 
his Commentar}', with respect to this subj* ct, seem 
somewhat confused and contradictory. On this text, 
however, he unequivocally acknowled:^es a distinct 
state of departed spirits. His words are as follows — 
*' He (the Lord Jesus Christ) possesses the absolute 
*' sovereignty, as dwelling in liuman nature, over the 
" invisible world, the state of separate spirits, and 
" over death and the grave, so that he removes men 
"out of this life, and consigns their bodies to the 
" grave and corruption, when^ and as he pleases; he 
" then fixes their souls in happiness or misery with ab- 
" solute authority ; and he will soon raise all their dead 
" bodies, and either receive them into Heaven, or shut 
" them up for ever in Hell, as he sees good." In this 
passage, there is the state of separate spirits, in which 
the souls of men are either in happiness or misery, 
until their dead bodies being raised and united to their 
souls, they are fixed in the final Heaven of happiness, 
and Hell of torments. 

9. Rev. vi. 8 — " And I looked* and behold a pale 
" horse, and his name that sat on him was Death, and 
« Hell («^«) followed with him." 

* See Doddridge's note, on this text, in this Dissertatioa, 


30 The State of the Departed. 

10. Rev. XX. 13—" Death and Hell {j^hi) delivered 
" up the dead that were in them." 

11. Rev. XX. 14— "And death and Hell {»h') 
" were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second 
« death." 

These passages are very bold and sublime personi- 
fications. In the first, Htll^ the place of departed spi- 
rits, follows death, denoting, that immediately after 
the body becomes subject to the dominion of death. 
Hell or the invisible place receives the soul. 

But, as is declared in the second passage, death shall 
deliver up the bodies, and Hell the spirits that were 
subject to their dominion. And, 

As is announced in the last verse, death, as well as 
Hell, the place of the departed, shall be destroyed, 
shall be cast into the lake of fire. " The death which 
" consists in the separation of the soul and body, and 
" the state of souls intervening between death and 
" judgment, shall be no more. To the wicked they 
" shall be succeeded by a more terrible death, the 
" damnation of Gehenna^'* the Hell of torments. 

The last passage is an incontrovertible evidence, 
that Hell is applied to the place of the departed. If 
by Hell we understand the place of torments ; as by 
the lake of fire ^ by which the second death is deno- 
minated, the Hell of torments is undoubtedly meant; 
then the personification becomes absolute nonsense — ■ 
the Hell of torments is cast into the Hell of torments.^-" 

t;See Dr. Campbell's Prelim. Diss. vi. part ii. p. 13- 

IVie State of the Departed, 91 

Dr. Doddridge considers Hell in these passages as 
denoting the separate state. And Dr. Scott again un- 
equivocally avows its existence. He thus comments 
on these passages — " The grave and separate state will 
*' give up the bodies and souls contained in them." 
*' Then death and Hell^ the grave and separate state^ 
" (represented as two persons,) will be cast into the 
" lake of fire : that Is, they shall subsist no longer to 
" receive the bodies and the souls of me?2.^^ 

The only instance of a personification, equal in bold- 
ness and sublimity to that contained in the above pas- 
sages, is where the prophet Isaiah represents the de- 
parted soiils of mighty monarchs, in the place of the 
departed, as in motion and agitation at the approach of 
the departed spirit of the king of Babylon. " Hell 
" from beneath is moved for thee, to meet thee at thy 
*' coming, it stirreth up the dead for thee."* 

The above, it is believed, are all the passages in the 
New Testament in which the English word Hell is 
found corresponding to ii^r.i, Hades, in the original, 
and denoting the place of the departed. 

There are thirteen passages in the New Testament 
in which the word Hell is found expressed by yE£vv«, 
Gehenna, in the original, and denoting the place of 

A summary of this doctrine of a place of departed 
spirits may be thus exhibited. 

* Isaiah xiv. 9- 

92 The State of the Departed, 

As the souls of men are not admitted into Heaven, 
the place of final happiness ; nor into Hell, the place 
of final torment ; according to the representations of 
the sacred writings, until the resurrection, and the 
judgment of the great day ; and as the soul, both from 
reason and Scripture, is not previously in a state of un- 
consciousness,* it follows, that during this interval, she 
must subsist in a separate state. 

As the happiness of Heaven, and the misery of 
Hell, the place of final torment, are represented in 
Scripture as the happiness or misery of the whole man^ 
of his body united to his soul ; and as this union, dis' 
solved by death, is not renewed until the resurrection 
and judgment of the great day ; it follows, that previ- 
ously to this event, the soul cannot be a subject of the 
happiness of Heaven, or of the misery of the final Hell 
of torment, but must be in Separate state of incom- 
plete, though inconceivably grtat felicity or woe. 

And that there is this place of the departed, denO' 
minated, in allusion to its secret and invisible charac- 
ter, uhiy Hades or Hell, where, in distinct abodes, the 
souls of the righteous and of the wicked experience 
inconceivable happiness or misery, expecting the con- 
summation of their felicity or woe, at the day of judg^ 
ment, is placed beyond doubt by the fact that Christ's 
human soul was in Hell, (Hades,) in the place of the 

* In the Dissertation, 1 have not repeated the arguments in fa- 
your of the conscious state of the soul when separated by death 
from the bod}', which are succinctly stated in the Address. 

The State of the. Departed, 93 

departed, and in that part of this place denominated Pa- 
radise, in the interval between his death and his resur- 
rection. For, 

During this interval, his human soul was in some 
place : since, independently of every other considera- 
tion, it was declared of him by the prophet, that " his 
*' soul was not to be left in Hell." 

But his soul, during this period, could not have been 
in Heaven ; for he did not ascend to Heaven, agree- 
ably to his own declaration, until after his resurrection. 

Nor could his soul have been in the Hell of torment, 
(an impious supposition,) for he declared, as matter of 
triumph and joy to the penitent thief, that after death 
they should be together in Paradise. 

In Paradise, then, that region of peace and joy, in 
Hades, the place of the departed, was the human soul 
of the blessed Jesus in the interval between death and 
the resurrection. 

And where the human soul of Jesus was during this 
period, there, during the same period, must be the souls 
of the human race whose sentence of mortality he sus- 
tained, and of vvlioni he was the icprcsentative. 

This doctrine has not the most remote connection 
with the papal doctrine of purgatory. 

That the celebrated Protestants whose names have 
been exhibited in support of this doctrine, in the pre- 
ceding pages; that Campbell, and Doddridge, and 
Macknight, Presbyterian divines ; that Bishops Tay- 
lor, Bull, Burnet, Seeker, Horsle}-, Tomline, and other 

94 The State of the Departed. 

Bishops of the English Church ; that Hammond, and 
Whitby, and Clarke, and Scott, clergymen, and Sir 
Peter King, a distinguished layman of that Church ; 
that Wesley, and Clarke, of the Methodist communion ; 
that Bishops Seabury, and White, of our own Church ; 
that all these, living in different ages and countries, and 
of different religious denominations, should have con- 
spired to introduce the papal doctrine of purgatory, will 
hardly be credited. 

The papal doctrine is, that " some few have before 
" their death so fully cleared up their accounts with 
" the Divine M ijesty, and washed away all their stains 
" in the blood of the Lamb, as to go straight to Hea- 
*' ven after death ; and that others who die in the guilt 
" of deadly sins, go straight to Hell."* The doctrine 
set forth in the preceding pages is, that none go to 
Heaven, or to Hell, (ye^wa, Gehenna,) until after the 
day of judgment. In the interval between death and 
the resurrection, they are in a state of unchangeable 
happiness or misery in the place of the departed. 

The papal doctrine is, that those who do not die per- 
fectly pure and clean, nor yet under the guilt of unre- 
pented deadly sin, go to purgatory, where they suffer 
certain indefinable pains, and the pains of material fire, 
until God*s justice is satisfied, or they are freed from 
these pains by the masses said for their souls. These 

* The Catholic Christian Instructed, p. IJ6 — a book of stand- 
ard authority among the Roman Catholics, published by one of 
their distinguished Bishops, the Right Rev. Dr. Chaloner. 

The State of the Departed. 95 

tenets, it must be apparent, are in no degree sanctioned 
by the doctrine advanced in the preceding pages, with 
respect to departed spirits. The eternal destiny of the 
individual is unchangeably fixed at death. His condi- 
tion, in the place of the departed, is an unchangeable 
condition of happiness or misery, until the day of judg- 
ment, when this happiness or misery is consummated 
in body and soul. 

The papal doctrine with respect to Christ's descent 
into Hell is, that he went not into the place of departed 
spirits, as is believed by those who maintain the exist- 
ence of this place, but into a region called Limbus 
Patrum^ to manifest his glory to the holy saints, who 
had departed before his advent, and to release them 
from their confinement, and take them to Heaven. 

There is thus a total dissimilarity between the papal 
doctrine of purgatory and the doctrine of the descent 
into Hell, and the state of the departed, advanced in 
the preceding pages. 

The sermon of Bishop Bull, (from which Dr. Dod- 
dridge quotes with approbation,*) in which he esta- 
blishes this doctrine of a place of departed spirits, 
contains a refutation of the papal doctrine of purgatory, 
and shows the entire difference between it and the doc- 
trine which he advocates of an intermediate state. 
After exhibiting the faith of the primitive Church on 

• See page 59» 

96 The State of the Departed. 

this point, he observes* — " From what hath been sai(J, 
*' it appears that the doctrine of the distinction of the 
" joys of Paradise, the portion of good souls in that 
" state of separation, from that yet fuller and most 
*' complete beatitude of the kingdom of Heaven, after 
" the resurrection, consisting in that clearest vision of 
" God, which the Holy Scriptures call seeing him face 
" to face, is far from being popery, as some have 
" ignorandy censured it ; for we see it was the current 
*' doctrine of the first and purest ages of the Church. 
•' I add, that it is so far from being popery, that it is 
*' directly the contrary. For it was the popish conven- 
*' tion at Fiorence^-\ that first boldly defined agdinst the 
" sense of the primitive Christians — /7mt those souls j 
" which having contracted the bleniish of sin, are, ei- 
" ther in their bodies or out of them, purged from ity 
" do present!// go info M^avcn, and there clearly behold 
" God himself one God in three Persons, as he is. 
" And this decree they made, partly to establish their 
*' superstition of prayer to the saints deceased, whom 
" they would needs make us believe, to see and know 
*' all our necessities and concerns in speculo Trinitatis, 
" in the glass of the Trinity, as they call it, and so to 
" be fit objects of our religious invocation ; but chiefly 
" to introduce their purgatory, and that the prayers of 
" the ancient Church for the dead might be thought to 
" be founded on a supposition, that the souls of some 
" faithful persons after death go into a place of grievous 
" torment." 

* Bull's Scr. vol. i. p. 114 t In the 15th Century, 

The State of the Departed. 97 

This doctrine of the separate existence of the soul, 
in the place of the departed, between death and the 
resurrection, being expressly revealed, should be an 
object of faith. 

1. It resolves all doubts witli repect to the condition 
of tlie soul after her departure from the body, and be- 
fore her reunion to it at the resurrection- The soul, 
during this ptriod, is in a state of consciousness ; either 
enjoying a foretaste of future bliss, or tormented by the 
anticipated pangs of future woe, after the judgment of 
the great day. 

2. It is thus calculated to fill the wicked with dis- 
may. It cuts off the hope of a moment's intermission 
of torment after death. The worm that never dies im- 
mediately begins to gnaw. In the company of spirits, 
wretched like themselves, they dwell in the dark region 
of the departed, anticipating the summons which, unit- 
ing them to incorruptible bodies, will bring them to the 
judgment-seat, and also the more dread sentence that 
will consign them to Ge/ienna, to the Hell of torment, 
the " lake of fire" that " burneth for ever and ever." 

3. But this doctrine of the place of the departed is 
full of consolation to the faithful disciples of the Lord 
Jesus. It assures them that, in the long interval be- 
tween death and the resurrection, while detained from 
Heaven, they shall not be deprived of a foretaste of its 
glories. In the bosom of Abraham, in the enjoyment 
of his society, and of the blessed fellowship of all the 


98 The State of the Departed. 

departed saints, they shall experience the most exalted 
delights. " Delivered from the burden of the flesh," 
their souls shall be with the Lord Jesus, the rays of 
whose glory sanctify and cheer the Paradise of his 
saints. Here they shall enjoy perpetual peace and fe- 
licity ; anticipating their " consummation both in body 
*' and soul in God's eternal and everlasting glory." 

Why, then, Christian, shouldest thou fear to die ? 
Thy soul is no% for a moment, to lose that conscious- 
ness which is dear to her as her existence. The dark- 
ness of death is not, for a moment, to cover thy spirit. 
The instant thou dost close thine eyes on the Morld, 
thy soul opens her j )vful vision on the delights of Para- 
dise. And Paradise is but the introduction to that 
Hmven^ where, thy whole nature perfected and glori- 
fied, thou shalt taste the fulness of joy, and " be for 
" ever with the Lord." 



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